Pelham & Strutt


Zac Lyndon

It is estimated that in the United Kingdom, up to 4 out of every 5 adults aged 16 or over, will experience back pain at some point in their lifetime, with back pain accounting for 7 million GP visits every year and over 50 million days of absence from work. Pelham and Strutt aims to create shapewear and compression wear that encourages the most efficient muscular activity and alleviate pain in the back, neck, shoulders and prevent pain with posture correcting mapping.

In order to achieve this, Pelham and Strutt approached Judith Pitt, Member of the Health Professions Council and chartered Physiotherapist to assist in the design of a garment. The first element of the design to support posture is the distinctive Y shape mapping on the back of the tops, which cross the Latissimus Dorsi muscle at the back of the shoulder and the muscles between the shoulder blade and upper spine. These muscles are all important in helping to brace the shoulders back and maintain a good upper spinal posture as good posture originates in these muscles.

The mapping incorporated into each deign helps to off load the muscles that connect the neck to the point of the shoulders which so often become tense and a subsequent source of pain. Support like this helps us to resist the tendency to become round shouldered. Encouraging these muscles to support the back effectively helps to reduce the chance of developing neck, shoulder and upper back pain.

There is no doubt that improving upper back posture will influence the positioning and posture lower down the spine. The second element of the designs is the mapping across the lower abdomen which works in conjunction with the Y shape mapping as Physiotherapist Judith Pitt-Brooke explains: "Linking the postural encouragement in the upper spine through the Y shaped compression in the garments, with the compression across the lower abdomen which helps give biofeedback, encourages contraction in the lower abdominals, and is highly likely to be beneficial for back pain sufferers."