The chances are that you will have been told to “sit up straight” at some point in your life, but did you know that all that nagging was actually super important for your overall health? Maintaining good posture is something that many of us don’t give a second thought to; however, it is an essential part of ensuring that the body is in great condition and it can even have a positive impact on the mind, too.
Benefits of Good Posture
- Ensures bones are aligned
- Reduces stress on the body
- Distributes tension effectively
- Enables better muscle coordination
- Holds spinal joints in place
- Reduces risk of injury
- Prevents back and muscular pain
- Decreases abnormal wearing of joints
- Improves sleep
- Alleviates irritability associated with pain
Working on posture is as important for the body as maintaining a good diet, sleeping properly, and exercising regularly. Awareness of posture needs to happen when sitting, standing, or sleeping. So, how can you make sure that your posture is the best it can be?
Regular exercise is a vital step in strengthening the muscles so that they are able to support the body comfortably. Whether you’re a regular at the gyms or you prefer to exercise at home, there are a few key exercises you can include into your routine to work on the muscles supporting your posture, such as:
- Child’s pose
- Cat cow stretch
- Forward fold
- Chest opener
- High planks
- Side planks
- Downward dog
- Thoracic spine rotation
- Isometric rows
With more than 85% of workers sitting at their desks every day and 44% of the world’s population playing online games, it is extremely important that we pay attention to the way we hold our posture when we sit. Whether working on a PC or playing games on a phone, ensuring that your spine has the correct alignment is the best way to avoid incurring pain or injury. Working from home or becoming a professional gamer might sound like the dream, but the similarities with office work are undeniable and they have the same impact on your back.
Making a career out of playing online games like poker, for example, requires putting in a lot of hours of looking at a screen, so it is essential to ensure that your workstation is set up correctly as this will alleviate any unnecessary strain on your body and reduce aches and pains. It’s a good idea to invest in a good-quality office chair that allows for adjustments.
Invest in your sleep
The work doesn’t end when we go to bed either. As we spend more than a third of our lives in bed, it is super important to ensure that our posture isn’t compromised while we rest. Investing in good quality, supportive mattresses to promote the correct spinal alignment is the first step; orthopedic pillows are also key as they will help to support the neck. Whether sleeping on the back, front, or side, there are a few techniques that can ensure that the spine stays parallel to the ground.
- Side sleepers can use a wedge or pillow between the knees to maintain hip and spine alignment and reduce pressure on the joints.
- Front sleepers should try to retrain themselves to sleep on their backs, but if this is not possible then removing pillows will help to prevent neck strain.
- Back sleepers can use pillows placed in the small of the neck to promote spinal alignment
One of the biggest causes of bad posture is the amount of time we spend looking down at our phones. It’s possible to limit this by reducing the amount of time spent on a mobile device or bringing the screen up to eye level to prevent slouching and slumping over it. Most mobile phones have the option to set time limits for the usage which may be useful in reducing screen time.
There’s no doubt about it, maintaining good posture is a super important part of keeping ourselves fit and healthy. The benefits of working on a good posture are the perfect reason to start working on yours today.