You’ve probably been told to “stand up straight” or to “stop slouching” once or twice in your life (or many times, let’s be real). What a lot of people don’t realize is how damaging a bad posture can be! Not only to our physical health, but as well as many other aspects of our mental health and wellbeing.
The effects of posture increase even more as we age.
Unfortunately, modern lifestyles are becoming increasingly sedentary. We rely on transport methods instead of walking, and most of us spend a lot of time sitting at computers, working online, gaming, or binge-watching Netflix for hours on end. The result of all these habits is that our postural muscles are being used less and less, which means they tire more easily when they are used. This makes it harder to maintain a good posture when you are standing or sitting… so you slump, slouch, and lean even more!
The relationship you have with your postural muscles may have flickered out over time but the end result is that poor posture puts your body at risk for spinal wear and tear and chronic pain. Not only that, having poor posture can affect your health in many ways, some of which may surprise you. While the obvious consequences are the deterioration of your neck and spine and associated ligaments, muscles and tendons, the less obvious consequences are headaches, decreased flexibility, loss of mobility, nerve entrapment, poor balance (potentially leading to falls), bad digestion, difficulty breathing, reduced energy levels, and even negative self-esteem.
It’s surprising how widely the impact of poor posture can stretch!
The good news is that bad posture is just a habit we’ve got into, and as we know, habits can be broken.
Musculoskeletal practitioners like physical therapists and massage therapists can help by giving you specific exercises to help you strengthen weak muscles and relax tight ones, thereby improving your posture.
Getting that perfect spine isn’t a quick fix, but small changes to your daily routine, becoming more body conscious, and performing exercises a couple of days a week will go a long way to helping improve your posture, reduce the risk of injury, and prevent pain.
What type of posture do you have? Click here.
Strengthening exercises for each posture type:
Do you need assistance in correcting your posture? Reach out to us here.
Disclaimer: this article nor the provided information replaces care and advice provided by healthcare and medical professionals, and is meant only as a guide and informational tool.