With today’s sedentary lifestyle and its effect on our health, we need to look once more to the importance and positive benefits of good posture.
Read on to learn more about how you can improve and maintain good posture for life.
When posture becomes stuck in a position the body can’t self correct, there is the potential for the various automatic body processes to be impacted. A slouching posture can put pressure on the internal organs. A compressed rib cage can restrict breathing, oxygen flow and blood circulation, which in turn can affect your metabolism too.
Not only does having your body in a more upright position allow you to breathe more fully and easily, but as you get more oxygen into the blood, it helps you to burn calories more efficiently, as well as to think more clearly. All this has a positive flow on effect for mood, concentration and energy levels in general.
In my practice, I see patients every day, who can’t believe the effects good posture has on their health. They not only look better, but feel freer and more able to cope with the stresses of everyday life – and their outlook is generally more positive.
Research shows that when your body is in a slumped over posture with the head in a forward position, this puts greater pressure on the muscles of the neck and back to hold it up. If your muscles are tensed all the time, this can negatively impact on your overall range of motion, and often pains and aches will eventuate, physical activity becomes more difficult and you become susceptible to injuries.
So what can we do to improve posture?
If you do experience pain as a result of poor posture, help is available. ABC chiropractic adjustments can help to release bodily injuries, effectively unwinding past trauma, enabling the body to move free from pain, and re-establishing a natural upright posture. Once posture has been corrected, it’s important to maintain an upright posture for optimal health. Here’s a few tips to maintain a good posture:
If your office chair seat is adjustable, tilt your seat so it’s lower at the front and higher at the back. If not, place a foam wedge or folded towel at the back of your seat. This lifts your bottom above knee height and positions the spine in a relaxed normal S-curve resulting in a good upright posture.
It’s also important to have good posture while standing or walking. We recommend a shoe with a slight heel to ensure the body is kept in an upright alignment.
Even sleeping with a good posture has health benefits for the body. A firm mattress and the right pillow can help encourage your spine to go back into a neutral position – allowing your spine to rest from the day’s exertions.
To help support your good posture, be sure to also build in regular exercise during the week (e.g. walking, cycling, swimming, yoga, pilates etc.), This will help to stretch and strengthen your muscles.
Yours in good health,
Dr. Hasan Helou