Standing up straight requires a greater number of muscles, therefore may contribute to weightloss. Regardless a tall posture with drawn-in midline always looks thinner.
Body posture is the position in which you hold your body upright against gravity while standing, sitting or lying down. Good posture involves training your body to stand, walk, sit and lie in positions where the least strain is placed on supporting muscles and ligaments during movement or weight-bearing activities. Proper posture:
Keeps bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used properly. Helps decrease the abnormal wearing of joint surfaces that could result in arthritis. Decreases the stress on the ligaments holding the joints of the spine together. Prevents the spine from becoming fixed in abnormal positions. Prevents fatigue because muscles are being used more efficiently, allowing the body to use less energy. Prevents strain or overuse problems. Prevents backache and muscular pain. Andcontributes to a good appearance.
Five Key Kenetic Check points for Posture
Neck, shoulders, hips, knees, and feet are the five check points for improving one’s posture. In your chair start by sitting up with your back straight and your shoulders back. Your buttocks should touch the back of your chair. All three normal back curves should be present while sitting. A small, rolled-up towel or a lumbar roll can be used to help you maintain the normal curves in your back. Here’s how to find a good sitting position when you’re not using a back support or lumbar roll:
Sit at the end of your chair and slouch completely. Draw yourself up and accentuate the curve of your back as far as possible. Hold for a few seconds. Release the position slightly (about 10 degrees). This is a good sitting posture. Distribute your body weight evenly on both hips. Bend your knees at a right angle. Keep your knees even with or slightly higher than your hips. (use a foot rest or stool if necessary). Your legs should not be crossed. Keep your feet flat on the floor. Try to avoid sitting in the same position for more than 30 minutes.
At work, adjust your chair height and work station so you can sit up close to your work and tilt it up at you. Rest your elbows and arms on your chair or desk, keeping your shoulders relaxed.
When sitting in a chair that rolls and pivots, don’t twist at the waist while sitting. Instead, turn your whole body.
When standing up from the sitting position, move to the front of the seat of your chair. Stand up by straightening your legs. Avoid bending forward at your waist. Immediately stretch your back by doing 10 standing backbends.
Correct driving position
Use a back support (lumbar roll) at the curve of your back. Your knees should be at the same level or higher than your hips.
Move the seat close to the steering wheel to support the curve of your back. The seat should be close enough to allow your knees to bend and your feet to reach the pedals. Keep both hands on the wheel at all times.
Sports, Exercise, and Gym Training
Whenever training, always check for structural misalignments, especially if you are adding load like squats or standing shoulder press. Upper, pelvic, and lower body distortions such as turning feet out, locking knees in, or collapsing foot arches are all improved by adequate warm up and strength training.
The above advice will benefit a majority of people with joint pain as a result from poor posture and postural load. If any of the above guidelines causes an increase of pain or spreading of pain to the legs, do not continue the activity and seek the advice of a physician or physical therapist.
Tara welcomes questions in relation to nutrition and exercise, to be answered in the weekly column ‘Food and Fitness Matters’. If you have a question please email it to [email protected]