A sedentary lifestyle can adversely affect your muscles and have a bad impact on your overall posture. For a lot of us, sitting at office desks all day is something that we can’t help. It’s not really an option. So, do we have to accept the fact that our posture will suffer because we’re sitting all day? Absolutely NOT.
Whether you’re sitting at your desk or are cocooned in the comfort of your home, you can always make small changes in your routine to ensure you have a good posture. Here is a quick guide that will help you know everything you need to know about posture.
What Is Posture?
When you’re sitting, standing, or even lying down, your body is in the position that it is because of posture. Without a posture, you wouldn’t be able to hold yourself up. You would simply fall back on the ground.
A good posture can be achieved if correct alignment of body parts is done. It also needs to be supported by the correct amount of muscle tension against gravity. Normally, hamstrings and other large muscles are in charge of maintaining a good posture for you.
Postural muscles, which are in your abdomen, back, and pelvis, act as corset for your body. They hold your body together and prevent the forces of gravity from pushing it. For a good posture, you need to have good postural muscles.
Why Is Good Posture Important For You?
A good posture makes it easy for you to sit, walk, and lie down. It places your body in such a position that the least amount of strain is placed on your supporting muscles and ligaments when you are moving around or carry any weight. It can also help you in:
- Decreasing wear and tear of joints
- In keeping arthritis at bay
- Minimizing risk of injury
- Preventing muscle fatigue, muscular pain
What Happens When You Do Not Have A Good Posture?
If you do not have a good posture, your muscles can become less efficient. Because of this, you may require more energy to move and keep your body balanced.
A bad posture causes excessive strain on your muscles which makes them work harder than usual. Some muscles become shorter and tighter, while others can become longer and weaker.
It may make your more susceptible to injury and back pain. This is a typical symptom for people who work for long hours on the computer. When you are using a laptop or computer, or body needs to bend forward at the waist. When your body stays in this position for a prolonged period of time, it causes pain.
Factors That Contribute To Poor Posture
A sedentary lifestyle is just one of the factors that contributes to a poor posture. Other factors that can cause postural problems include:
- Wearing High Heels Frequently Or For Long Hours
- Using Cell Phones/Tablets/Laptops For Long Periods Of Time
- Position Of Your Office Chair
- Height of Computer Screen
- Unhealthy sitting or standing habits
How Can You Correct Your Posture?
The first step to correcting your posture is to become conscious of your lifestyle habits and how your posture currently is. Take some time to analyze whether you are sitting for too long or using your phone for extended periods of time. Recognize your problems so that you know where you need to bring about changes in your lifestyle.
Here are a few tips to correct your posture:
- Always rest your feet on the floor or on a foot rest
- Do not cross your legs
- Make sure your ankles are places in front of your knees
- Adjust your chair in such a way that your knees are placed in line or at a level below your hips
- Make sure you leave some gap between the back of your knees and front of your seat
- Always use the backrest of the chair
- Adjust your table and chair in such a way that your forearms are placed parallel to the ground.
- Your feet should be at a width of your shoulders
- You should pull your shoulders backwards
- Tuck your stomach in
- Stand in such a way that the ball of your foot holds the majority of your weight
- Your earlobes should fall in line with your shoulders
- Your knees should be slightly bent
- If you have to stand for a long time, keep shifting your weight between toes, heels and feet.
- Do not sleep on your stomach
- Sleep with a pillow
- Find a comfortable mattress
- To reduce back pain, sleep on your side.
- Place a pillow between your legs when sleeping on your side
- Place a pillow under your knees when sleeping on your back
There are few quick desk exercises that can also help you improve your posture at work. We will look at them in the next article. Do you have any questions regarding posture? Please mention them in the comments section below. I will do my best to answer them.