Does your back hurt? Do you have tension in your shoulders, and do you feel stiffness and tightness in your body? Now, stop and think about the position of your body.
If you’re sitting reading this, with a rounded back, shoulders slumped forward, head in front of the shoulders, chest hunched in, and hips turned back, all that pain may be due to poor posture.
More and more, we are adding daily habits that make it difficult for us to maintain a correct and healthy posture. In general, our lifestyle leads us to spend most of our time working with a bad posture in front of the computer.
Furthermore, apart from the amount of hours that we spend in front of the television or using our mobile phones, if we add the lack of physical activity and exercise, we find a loss of strength in the stabilizing muscles, which is what helps us to have better postural control.
Without realizing it, these bad posture habits can in the long-term cause back, neck and shoulder pain, very common in our society.
How we have slowly acquired poor postural hygiene.
When you have poor postural hygiene, the body becomes stiff and loses flexibility by misaligning the skeletal muscle system, which can lead to more serious health problems.
However, you can easily correct your posture with little daily efforts. Creating habits of movement and performing exercises of different postural correction techniques to strengthen the muscles of the specific muscles, thus helping to eliminate back pain.
At Movehability, we can help you correct your body posture by designing personalized postural correction exercises that will allow you to restore and modify your posture in the long term.
In other words, we will help you create new habits that will directly improve your quality of life. If you normally have back, neck and shoulder pain, and you’ve noticed that your posture makes it hard for you to rest well, do not hesitate to contact us.
In this article we will help you to understand what does posture correction actually means, as well as some basic exercises and techniques that can help you acquire a correct posture.
Correcting your back posture.
The position in which we maintain our movement or support our own body is the posture.
Indeed, not only do we maintain a specific posture when we are in motion, but also in order to support our body, we need a part of our deepest muscles to be working while maintaining ourselves in that posture.
Supporting the body is based on actions such as sitting, standing or even while we sleep. If we maintain correct posture during these activities, we probably will not have any painful symptoms, but if not, our quality of life will be affected.
For this reason, we insist that in adults and children, posture correction must be worked for as long as necessary to create postural habits. That is, until our stabilizing muscles are strong and balanced to maintain that correct position of our body.
So that, in the long term, we have internalized all the posture correction techniques and make use of them with the aim of having and maintaining both our dynamic and static posture in the healthiest way.
When we talk about the dynamic and static posture of our body this is what we mean:
- Dynamic posture: refers to how we support our body when in motion. For example, when we are walking, running or when picking up objects from the ground or when holding some weight; all these activities are quite common in certain jobs.
- Static posture: this is how we maintain our body when it is not in motion; like when we are sitting, standing or while we sleep.
Either in the dynamic posture or in the static posture, it is essential to maintain a correct body posture. The basis of these postures is the position in which the spine rests.
Naturally, the spine has three curvatures: neck, mid-back, and lower back.
A correct posture is the one that naturally maintains these three curves while we carry out all our daily activities.
But if we acquire bad posture habits, these curves can increase or decrease. Consequently, symptoms that accuse pain could start appearing, a loss of flexibility, stiffness and tightness or even, in the most extreme cases, protrusions, hernias, back curvatures, slip discs … etc.
A good technique to see if we maintain these correct postures properly throughout the day is to see if our head remains upright on top of our shoulders and if the shoulders, at the same time, are correctly aligned with our hips.
How can having a good or bad body posture affect my quality of life?
Maintaining poor posture throughout our lives becomes a risk factor for our health.
Not maintaining an adequate posture when we are children and later in our adult life due to bad posture habits can trigger different pathologies such as:
- Misalignment of the skeletal muscle system
- Wear and tear of the spine, cause of spondylosis and cause back injuries.
- Chronic pain in the neck, shoulders and back
- Partial or complete decrease in flexibility
- Irregular joint movement
- Unstable balance or clumsiness in movements
- Heavier digestion or difficulty digesting some foods well. When you slouch, you compress the abdominal organs, including your digestive tract.
- In more severe cases, it can cause impaired lung dysfunction affecting breathing and the amount of air that gets into your brain.
There is no reason to be alarmed, some of these pathologies are the daily life of many people living with chronic pain.
To avoid this, at Movehability we design plans to correct your body posture in a simple way by creating small habits.
We believe that the person with these pains needs to be aware that there is a way to change their posture habits and thus achieve a better quality of life.
Sometimes it is hard to believe that just a series of exercises for the correction of the body posture is enough to relieve our muscular tension or musculoskeletal ailments.
However, this is basically what we should do. Doing some very simple techniques and exercises a few minutes every day, will improve the alignment of our spine and will considerably upgrade our quality of life.
Techniques and exercises to improve body posture correction
Most people can spend a long time sitting, at work, at school, or when they get home. Keep these techniques in mind when you are going to be sitting for a long period of time
Correct posture when sitting:
- Change your position frequently
- Take short walks in your office or home. Very brief but every half hour
- Relieve muscle tension by gently stretching your muscles from time to time doing spinal twists. On the video just below you can find some exercises to do while you are sitted on your desk.
- With your back straight, place one hand on the opposite knee and the other across the arm behind the back. Now turn the shoulder of the hand holding your knee to that same side. Lining the shoulders in profile completely. Turn your head back, looking over your shoulder at what is behind you.
- Try to keep your feet on the floor without crossing your legs. The ankles should rest a little bit ahead of the knees.
- Make sure your feet touch the ground and if it is not possible, use a footrest
- Your shoulders should be relaxed without reaching back but taking care not to bend forward.
- It is important to keep the elbows close to the body. The correct position is to bend them between 90 and 120 degrees, as if you lightly hold a cushion under each arm.
- Make sure your back has good support. It is important to keep the curve of the lower back, so if your chair does not have that curve, you can place a pillow behind your back to help you keeping the right curve.
- Both thighs and hips should have good support and padding. They must also be parallel to the ground.
- The hip bones must be in a neutral position. Pointing forward, not up or down but forward.
Correct posture when standing
The moment we are standing, without any movement, the upper and lower back begins to suffer. This is because we do not have internalized techniques for posture correction when we are static, standing without movement. How can we improve our posture when we are standing? Follow these simple techniques:
- Maintain the standing position with your feet aligned forward.
- Keep your shoulders back, but without any tension on your hips.
- To avoid tension, the stomach should not protrude. If you can, press the stomach slightly towards the back.
- Place most of your bodyweight spread between the heel and the ball of the foot (right where the toes begin).
- Now, try to keep your head upright without it moving forward or backward. Imagine a wire that runs from the end of your chin to the nape of your neck, right where the hair begins, diagonally up. Imagine that you put your hand on the nape of your neck and you pull the wire bringing your chin to your neck.
- The arms, at the same time, should fall naturally. Make sure there is no tension in the shoulders slightly trying to put the shoulder blades together. As if you had two wings attached on your shoulder blades.
- The feet must be separated, maintaining the same height and distance as both shoulders.
- The weight of the chest must fall on top of the toes while keeping the shoulders above the hips and slightly behind the back.
Correct posture when we are on the move
On the moment we initiate any kind movement, the posture can also greatly influence on creating possible injuries or ailments. The posture we have when we are sitting or standing says a lot about our way of walking or running. Therefore, here we will explain some exercises so that you consider the posture correction while you are on the move:
- The head should be centred. That is, looking a few meters ahead as walking, looking at the ground or on your mobile is not a very good option if you want to maintain a correct posture.
- Make sure your shoulders don’t tense up. They must have a natural position
- The arms must be swinging and not hanging down. In addition to correcting your posture, you will prevent your hands from swelling.
- Hold the belly slightly in, by bringing your belly muscles towards your spine. This can greatly influence in avoiding musculoskeletal pain, helping you if you are suffering from lower back pain.
- The hips must be accompanied by the legs and under no circumstances should we move them from side to side.
Our goal with this article was to introduce you to a series of posture correction techniques. All of them are very basic and you will see how in a short time you will notice an improvement.
Moreover, we also want you to see the need to maintain a correct posture and how to improve your lifestyle when it comes to posture. If we maintain proper body posture, we can feel better and our lives will change completely.
Physiotherapy sessions do not have to be so frequent if we are aware of our own body and everything that implies maintaining a correct body posture.
With Movehability you can discover great techniques and postural correction exercises. Together, we will get rid of back, neck, shoulder pain and strengthen the back and sacroiliac joint.
With a few posture tricks you can gain in quality of life. With a few tricks of posture you can gain in quality of life. We have an specific program to correct your posture, strengthen your stabilizing muscles and get super fit. Includes 72 programs: A 12-week training program to train either at home or in the gym. If you are interested to know a bit more please do not hesitate to contact me.