Posture is more important than you might think and whether you’re sitting at a desk, laying in bed or even standing, you could be creating a bad posture. With a few simple changes you can help avoid problems from bad posture in later life.
Even just by standing still you could be affecting your posture and your back. When you stand do you slouch or lean all weight onto one leg? If so you could be heading towards serious back problems including herniated disks.
How could this be prevented?
Try standing against a wall, if you have bad posture your shoulder blades won’t touch the wall, however training your shoulders to stretch and reach the wall will improve posture.
Standing straight pulling shoulder blades down so you straighten your back until they rest against the wall, lengthen your neck until your head reaches the wall and make sure your chin is parallel to the ground. Try to always stand so you share your weight equally across both legs.
Sitting at a desk
A lot of people have careers that involve sitting at a desk for long periods and once home sit down to unwind from a long day, so the majority of the week is spent not moving. How you sit at your desk is also important as so many people slouch at their desks which results in pain in their shoulders and lower back.
How can this be prevented?
When sat at a desk use the chair fully! When sat in the chair sit up straight with your ears, shoulders and hips in one vertical line making full use of the backrest. Any prolonged position is bad so move around on the chair and every half an hour have a stretch, walk or stand to give your body a break. Another alternative to consider when sitting at a desk is to use a balance ball, this then means the pelvis is rocked gently preventing you from getting ‘stiff’ or aching when standing.
Everyone needs sleep as a time to rest your body and mind after a long day and making sure you are sleeping in the best position for you will help your posture. 8 hours is a long time to be in a position and could have a negative impact on your posture.
How could this be prevented?
Having a firm mattress will support your back and turning your mattress regularly will keep springs fresh as well as keeping the mattress in good shape for longer. If you have been in a seated position just before you go to bed it is a good idea to walk around which will help to relax the pelvis and loosen the muscles before sleeping.
Some people spend a lot of time in the car commuting to and from work or if driving is part of their career. Sitting incorrectly in the car is not only dangerous but also can cause discomfort whilst travelling long distance and can contribute to long term posture problems.
How can this be be prevented
Pull the seat forward so you aren’t having to lean towards the steering wheel. Check that your legs and knees at 90 degrees with your head on the headrest and elbow are slightly bent when they rest on the wheel. This means you are taking full advantage of the seat and using every part to help support your back.
A few simple changes in your everyday life can really help you avoid possible bad posture in the future.