Your mother always said…
You may remember your mother telling you to “pull your shoulders back!” or “stand up straight!” when you were younger. Unfortunately mother was right, and it may have helped you reduce your current back or neck pain.
Research has reported that technology and modern living reinforce poor posture and increased levels of pain. You may have heard of the common problems related to “text neck” or “laptop neck” – dropping the neck to stare at a phone or tablet. It is not so much that the movement is causing the problem, rather, it is the repetition and the length of time you sustain the position that puts you at higher risk of delevoping muscle soreness, headaches, and spine problems. “Text neck” is problematic for the younger generation, who are developing poor postural habits, which will lead to future significant muscle and joint problems if uncorrected.
Poor posture is a broader issue than simply “text neck”. It includes your whole body, for example the way you sit, stand and sleep.
The risks of having poor postural habits
Your posture is important, whether it be standing, sitting, or sleeping, as it can lead to a number of issue.
Towards the end of a long working day, do you find yourself massaging the back of your neck, shoulders or lower back? That pain is most likely to be caused by your posture. Standing or sitting incorrectly for long periods of time will put a great deal of strain and pressure on your muscles, leading soreness which may also cause headaches and other complications.
Our bodies are meant to move, so when you’re not using your body the way it’s designed to be used, all your systems have to work harder. When your muscle contract they actively pump blood in and out, which oxygenates the cells as well as removing metabolic toxins. Therefore static positions restrict this process. In addition, slumping may also restrict your breathing, meaning even less oxygen will reach your muscles. All those complications contribute to a daily exhaustion. Continue to do this day and day out will cause your postural muscles to waste and become even more weak, leading to a chronic problem. Our Edinburgh patients are taught easy and quick techniques which they incorporate into their day to increase movement of muscles, and increase their oxygen levels!
But how do I correct my poor posture?
Thankfully, it is simple to change your postural habits and develop strength! At Edinburgh Sports and Spinal we teach you the importance of being aware of your body, and how each joint is supposed to be moved and how to intentionally correct your position.
Soon you will be able to find helpful videos on our website o posture online, however in the mean time see the pictures below, which shows pictures of correct posture when sitting, standing.
Text or laptop neck can be avoided by stretching periodically, holding your device higher, and moving your neck. Make sure your computer monitor is at eye level.
If you are still struggling with pain or unable to correct your own posture, please do not hesitate to contact us. Richard Worrall our physiotherapist would be happy to discuss your problems and provide some advise.