Congratulations! If you’re reading this post, you’re one step closer to changing your posture for the better. Often times, we take for granted how important good posture really is. The way we sit, stand, and sleep actually affects the way our bodies function and how well our muscles are able to deal with things like strain.
When we have poor posture, it puts strain on the postural muscles, resulting in a higher likelihood of injury and pain. Bad posture is a long-term problem that requires a lot of self-awareness and conscious effort to correct. The good news? It can be done.
How to Achieve Better Posture
There are a number of reasons one might want to try to correct their posture. For one, good posture helps prevent arthritis and joint pain, while minimizing the risk of injury. It also helps the body work more efficiently and prevents muscle fatigue, pain and strain. If you already have pain in your back, sometimes this can be linked to posture. Although the factors vary from person to person, when posture is corrected, the muscles are better able to support you, thus alleviating that pain.
As you may have guessed, the first step to fixing your posture is simply being aware of your postural habits. Being able to identify these behaviors is the first step toward healing them. Over time, practicing healthy postural habits will allow you to naturally sit, stand, and sleep in ways that are better for your body overall.
Keep in mind that everyone’s body has different needs. We recommend working with a chiropractor to get exercises that are catered to you and your body type, in addition to these tips. Working with a chiropractor is a great way to ensure your safety as well, since they will be able to guide you on your form, minimizing the risk of injury as you learn new exercises and activities to get better posture.
9 Tips to Improve Posture
- Don’t cross your legs when seated. Keep your ankles in front of your knees.
- Sleep with a pillow. There are actually pillows recommended specifically for problems with posture that are related to sleep.
- Don’t sleep on your stomach
- Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time. Get up and stretch, change your position and keep your muscles in motion.
- Sleep on your side or your back, especially if you have back pain. Put a pillow between your legs if you sleep on your side. If you’re a back sleeper, then you should keep a pillow under your knees.
- When seated for long periods of time, especially at work, relax your shoulders and keep forearms parallel to the ground
- When standing, stand up straight and tall with your shoulders back
- Let your arms hang down naturally at your sides when standing
- Find the right mattress, but remember that everyone is different, and what works for someone else, might not be right for you. Usually, firm mattresses are recommended for people suffering from back pain, but some find that softer mattresses work better to reduce pain.
No matter what, make sure you are comfortable. Using these tips in addition to regular chiropractic adjustment will have you standing up straight in no time and more importantly preventing back, neck, and shoulder pain in the future. Click below to schedule your appointment with Dr. Harlan.