Chiropractors never tire of telling people about the benefits of correct posture. That is good because so many people spend so much time in bad physical positions. It is quite easy to stand correctly (in line at the store) and sit correctly (eating at a restaurant), but how about in the car? How is your posture when watching TV? What about when you are sending a text message (an earlier post dealt with children and texting).
Poor posture can often lead to spinal pain, which is bad enough by itself. But back pain tends to cause pain in other areas of the body as well.
To help avoid this, here are some simple tips for good posture:
- Sit Up Straight! – Just like your Mother told you: keep your back straight and your shoulders back.
- Balance – Distribute your weight evenly. Whether sitting or standing, don’t support all of your weight with only one side of your body.
- Feet on the Floor – A corollary to balance. Keeping your feet flat on the floor helps you to balance your weight and keeps your spine straight.
- Move – Try to avoid prolonged sitting or standing (30 minutes). Just take a quick walk to the bathroom or the coffee pot. One minute of movement can be a big help.
- Sitting Angles – When you sit down, your knees should be at right angles (like the corner of a square). Adjust your desk chair and try to choose furniture that is the proper height.
- Sleeping – Find a sleeping position that helps you maintain the shape of your back. This may include a rolled towel under your lower back or a side sleeping position (but not a fetal position, which curves your spine in the wrong direction).
- Driving – Adjust the seat so that your knees are at the same level as your hips, or slightly higher. Engage the lumbar support (if you have that option) or place a small cushion behind your lower back. Sit up straight!
These simple tips will help you to have good body posture, which will in turn prevent problems such as back and neck pain.
Dr. Craig McGiffin of Clearview Chiropractic is your chiropractor for the Outer Banks. Call Dr. Craig if you are experiencing back pain or to discuss any of your other chiropractic needs.