My trapezius muscle has been killing me as of late and has really been hurting my posture. I have been doing exercises to stretch and relax my trapezius such as squeezing my shoulders back, shrugging my shoulder, and stretching my head to my shoulder laterally. These exercises have been making my shoulders hurt even more, and it feels it inflames it. So I was just wondering what can I do to relax this muscle. When I massage it I can feel that it is swollen, so I know something is irritated. I have not been lifting weights or exercising much. What exercises and stretch can I do to relieve this tension?
Both Karin and Harris have offered up the physician recommendation and I would second, or third, that option.
Sometimes more is not better. But rest, water and proper nutrition can provide us with better relief than treatment of the specific area.
We also tend to carry stress through our traps, so good stress relieving strategies may also help. You can try deep breathing, meditation, visualization, etc.
Also be mindful of your posture throughout the day. If you spend a lot of time driving, make sure you’re not sitting too far from the steering wheel and thereby rounding your shoulders forward to maintain contact with the wheel for example.
Lastly, foam rolling is a great technique for releasing tight traps and lats.
Good luck. I hope you get some relief soon.