Posture is the way a person hold his/her body while sitting, standing or lying down. Proper posture is the appropriate alignment of the body parts that are well supported by adequate amount of muscle pressure against gravity. Right posture is an essential way in maintaining the various complex structures in the back and the spine healthy. Good posture is more than cosmetic, it is necessary in reducing occurrence of back and neck pain. The back support on the other hand is crucial especially for people who spend most of their hours sitting on a chair or standing all day long.
People do not consciously keep their normal posture, but particular muscles do the job for them, it is automatic. Various muscle groups such as hamstrings as well as large back muscles are essential in keeping good posture. On the other hand, the ligaments support in holding the skeleton together. Such postural muscles, if perfectly functional, prevent the gravitational force from pushing a person over forward. The postural muscles keep the posture and balance when moving as well.
How to get better posture requires keeping the parts of our body aligned with each other. It also means keeping all parts in balance and well supported. Since people is bound of having several postures in a day, it is crucial to know what is satisfactory and the right ones for good back support. When shifting from one position to another position, it is ideal to do the shifting gently and smoothly. Upon establishment of the initial good posture habits, the movements will be automatic and effortless to maintain.
Why good posture is important?
If good posture and satisfactory back support is not maintained, it can contribute strain to muscles as well as add stress on the spine. Eventually, the stress brought about by poor posture can alter the anatomical characteristics of our spine, which can lead to the possibility of constricting the nerves and blood vessels; other problems with discs, joints and muscles. These are primary contributors to pain in the back and neck.
- Correct posture helps an individual sit, stand, walk and lie in positions that bring less strain in supporting the muscles as well as the ligaments when doing movements and bearing weights.
- Having the correct posture helps to keep the bones and joints in the right alignment for the muscles to be used correctly and decreasing abnormal wearing of the joint surfaces. It also reduces stress to the ligaments, which hold the spinal joint together, thereby lessen the occurrence of injury.
- Moreover, right posture allows the muscles to work effectively, permitting the body in using less energy, preventing muscle fatigue. It helps avoid muscle strain, back pain and overuse disorder.
In maintaining the right posture, it requires adequate muscle strength and flexibility, normal joint movement in the spine together with other body regions and effective postural muscles, which should be balanced on the both sides of spine. Additionally, postural habits must be recognized at home, workplaces and other areas where people do their usual activities.
Ways to Obtain Better Posture
The first step to address how to have better posture is to know exactly what are the things that you might be doing wrong while sitting, standing, walking or sleeping. The appropriate approach to understand if your posture is right is by observing self while walking. Focus your attention on the movements of the body from the head down to the toe.
Here are what to do and not to do to maintain good posture:
While Standing – Many people habitually place their hands in the pocket while they are standing. This habit can gradually results to slouching shoulders. While standing, good posture is maintained properly by keeping hands at the sides of the body. Keep some distance between feet in order to align with the shoulder.
Understand what you are doing by standing against the wall. Most people will have everything touch the wall except the head. This implies that improvement is necessary. Make it habitual to stand with shoulders upright. This will help the head to line up with the accordingly with the spinal cord.
While Sitting – People who are working in offices sitting for several hours in front of a computer should practice healthy sitting habits. Our spine is not capable of bearing prolonged weight loads in a static position. This may cause development of complications in the spinal column.
When sitting on a chair, the lower back or the lumbar region of the spinal cord must be provided with optimum support. It is essential to maintain the right posture and prevent lower back ache.
Keep the top of the computer screen at eye level and ensure that both your arms and wrists are well supported by the table and chair. Let your head rest back on the chair.
While sleeping – It will help using firm mattress to provide the right support to your body while you sleep. Sleeping on your back will help to improve posture because in that position, the spinal cord receives complete support from your bed, while the shoulders are lined up with the body perfectly.
The choice of pillow to use is up to one’s preference. However, flat pillow is appropriate if you are sleeping on your back. An extra pillow can be used also below the knees while sleeping to lessen the strain on the lower lumbar region of the body.
Exercising – Practice to get up from chair regularly or do stretching at regular intervals to help relieving muscle fatigue. Accordingly, people who do regular exercise maintain a better posture than those who only sit for long period.
Therefore, make it a habit to do exercises at least 15 to 30-minutes daily. Doing exercises for back and abs brings outstanding result to your overall health.
Overall, other than having good posture tips, improving your lifestyle will help a lot to achieve good posture. Simply keeping weight down can provide amazing results related to your posture. Exercising can strengthen the muscles, which will help the body to be in the right position.