Contributed by Tara Workman, Chiropractic Physician
Our posture is with us wherever we go and with every activity that we do. Posture is habitual, meaning that without conscious awareness to our posture, we have poor posture without even thinking about it.
In fact, the areas that we spend the most amount of our time are the places that we commonly have the worst posture. If you spend more than an hour per day in these places your posture may be compromised.
The most common places to have the worst posture are:
• Seated at the Office: Being seated for hours per day is rough on our posture, and is one of the most common reasons for postural decline especially as we age. Most of us do not sit at our desks sitting back in our chairs to keep our back straight and keep our computers at eye level. Looking down for long periods of time is one way to cause headaches and neck pain. You can use a posture cushion to sit on for better posture, and raise your computer monitor if necessary to keep the monitor at eye level.
• Driving in a Car: When driving in a car, especially for long periods of time, many people slump in their seats and forget to sit up straight. People commonly drive with one hand, meaning that their shoulders are misaligned or lean to one side thus causing the pelvis to rotate. While driving think of sitting up straight and keeping both hands on the steering wheel and sitting even in your seat.
• Standing in Line: Face it, what do most of us do while standing in line? We pull out our cell phones and look down at our phones to pass the time while we are waiting in line. Looking down at a cell phone adds a lot of strain to your neck. Plus, when your feet get tired do you commonly shift your weight from one leg to the other? Keeping your weight distributed over both feet with your cellphone brought up to eye level is the best way to pass the time while waiting in line, without causing undue stress on your neck.
• Sleeping in Bed: We spend one-third of our life in bed! Then add bad posture every night, this accounts to many hours of poor posture throughout your life. Instead of sleeping on your stomach roll over to your back or your side. These are the best positions to sleep in. Also, watch the number of pillows underneath your head, for best posture you want your head to be in a neutral position while sleeping, whether it be on your back or side.
I want to challenge you to do yourself a favor and do a 24-hour posture challenge. For the next 24 hours, pay conscious attention to your posture in the areas that are most common for poor posture. For a full posture analysis, contact Dr. Tara Workman at Altair Chiropractic at 357-1818, and she can teach you how to correct your posture today.