In a world where many of us are constantly slumped over our desks on our computers or on our cell phones, we’re likely not thinking about our posture. But regardless of how much thought we put into it, having good posture is incredibly important for everyday health. You might not feel any immediate negative effects after sitting with poor posture for a couple of hours, but over time, the stress that poor posture puts on your spine can lead to long-lasting consequences for your spine. The constriction of nerves and blood vessels can then lead to back pain, such as muscle, joint, and disc troubles.
Additionally, the wear-and-tear associated with poor posture can lead to pain as your body tries to fight against spinal imbalances while staying as vertical as possible, says Ben Fidler, a personal trainer based in Washington D.C. During an interview with the Washington Post Fidler explained, “Bad posture wears down the body faster than it should.” If your head is forward, Fidler explains, muscles in the back of your neck are elongated while muscles in the front are contracted. This means that muscles, tendons, and other tissues are not working as efficiently as they could be.
One of the major differences between top athletes and the rest of us has to do with the efficiency it takes to move. “Top athletes can generate twice the force with the same body,” Fidler says. “They might use half the energy to stand up straight.” So what are the rest of us to do? Here are some suggestions for better posture.
Tips For Better Posture
- Roll shoulders back and center your head into alignment with your spine.
- Use your core to support yourself: engage your transverse abdominals and obliques by drawing air in towards your center.
- When sitting, keep your back flat against your chair with your shoulders tall and your head balanced above your spine.
- If you’re sitting at a desk, make sure to keep your arms bent at a 75 to 90-degree angle at your elbows.
- When walking, make sure to look straight ahead and keep your head centered directly above your spine. Keep your shoulders tall and step with your heel first, rolling gently to push off the front of your foot.
Alleviate Your Pain
Do you suffer from poor posture? Or perhaps you just experience a large amount of spinal-related pain and want to alleviate it? Either way, our expert chiropractic staff can improve your posture from a personalized treatment plan. To learn more about how to have good posture and for help with spinal alignment, contact Ideal Health Chiropractic today.