Importance of Good Posture

Importance of Good Posture:

Even if they didn’t realize it at the time, all those years of our parents telling us to sit up straight and not slouch not only helped us look poised as we were growing up, but they also had a positive effect on our posture.

Posture refers to how the body is aligned and positioned in conjunction with the force of gravity acting upon it. Regardless of whether we are sitting, standing or lying down, there is always a gravitational force that applies pressure on our ligaments, joints and muscles.

In ideal conditions, the back view of the spine should have no lateral curve and the legs should be symmetrical. From the side, the spine should form an S-shaped curve. An imaginary line should drop from the apex of the head through the center of gravity in the body and pass through the tip of the shoulder, the center of the hip joint, the center of the ankle joint and slightly behind the knee joint. This proper posture is a sign that we’ve evenly distributed gravity’s force throughout our body so that no one part is fatigued or overstressed.

Indications of poor posture include a slouching of the shoulders or forward leaning of the head. Poor posture impedes lymphatic drainage in the neck and causes strain on the posterior neck muscles. The extra weight on the discs can lead to premature arthritis of the neck. Poor posture can also include a forward tilt of the pelvis. This causes weight to shift in the body and can increase the curvature of the spine, which is associated with muscle weakness. Posture of this sort can lead to chronic lower back pain, muscle pain, weakness in the legs and premature spinal arthritis of the joints and discs.

Poor posture can result from car accidents, sports injuries, loss of bone density and sitting or standing improperly. Many people today have posture problems due to the way they sit. When we drive or use a computer, we frequently have the tendency to lean the head and neck forward, which causes the spine to round forward too. The weight of the head and upper body becomes heavy, and we must exert muscular energy and strain on the spinal ligaments to hold ourselves in this leaning position.

The first step to correcting poor posture is being aware of what causes it and what we can do to correct it. We need to be conscious of how we sit when we drive or work at our desks. Take frequent breaks to do neck exercises and stretch shoulder muscles. Use ergonomic gear to create a work environment that puts less stress on the spine. Invest in a neck pillow for sleeping.

If we’re unsure of what steps we should take for our particular posture problems—or if we feel pain in the neck and shoulders—an upper cervical chiropractor may be able to help with the issue. Upper cervical chiropractors are trained in proper body alignment and can provide us with suggestions and solutions for maintaining healthy posture throughout our daily lives.

References:

Correcting Neck Posture: A Key To Pain Relief. NeckSolutions.com. Retrieved October 27, 2009 from http://www.necksolutions.com/neck-posture.html.

O’Hara, Dennis. Chiropractic and Posture. PosturePage.com. Retrieved October 27, 2009 from http://posturepage.com/chiropractic/index.html.

D’Ambrosio, Frank J. Posture is Important. SCOI.com. Retrieved October 27, 2009 from http://www.scoi.com/posture.htm.

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17 Responses to “Importance of Good Posture”
  1. Back in the day, comportment was actually taught in school, I realize I’m dating my self here but we’ve had so much taken out of our school programs it’s a real shame. And add to what’s missing the new tools; computers, cell phones etc… and standing up straight or sitting up straight has become a thing of the past, to our hurt. Good posture isn’t just for looks, but plays an important role in overal health, being able to breathe properly and to digest our meals, even to move with ease and with out pain. Dance is one of the most beneficial activities as it really emphasizes good posture.

  2. Karen McMinn says:

    Brilliant post! Just like teaching children the value of preventative care through regular teeth brushing and flossing, posture definitely should be a part of the programme of preventative health at a very early impressionable age.

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  4. Julie says:

    I have been to see a chiropractor for some spinal injuries that used different types of traction devices in addition to adjustments. I have found that working on my posture is helpful but often times is very hard to maintain. It seemed easier when I was being adjusted regularly. I have since moved and now am working for an online healthcare supply store that sells traction devices. Seeing this article, I wonder if getting a traction device that I can use in my home would be helpful. It is not easy for my now to get to a chiropractic office but would a traction device at least be somewhat helpful?

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