Posture is easy to overlook, but it’s important for maintaining the health of your back and the function of your body. Unfortunately, many people have poor posture and you may also deal with this. Poor posture is an easy habit to fall into as it’s often more comfortable and requires less effort.
Despite this, you need to develop better posture. Failing to do so can lead to serious health challenges in the future like the compression of vertebrae and chronic pain. With this in mind, you’ll want to know how to improve your posture. We’ll give you some excellent pointers to implement into your daily life below.
One simple thing you can do for better posture is to stop slouching. You’ve likely heard of the term before, but do you know what it means? Slouching refers to sitting or standing in a slumped, lazy, and hunched over the way. Where this tends to happen the most is when you’re sitting. Good posture while sitting can be hard to maintain, especially when you sit for several hours at a time. As a result, your natural inclination will be to start slouching. If you aren’t actively focusing on keeping good posture, then slouching will be hard to avoid.
While slouching may feel more comfortable, it places more strain on muscles in your back that aren’t designed for it. With good posture, you properly balance the load across your body and keep your spine in line. Slouching is one of the greatest culprits for poor posture, but it’s fairly simple to correct.
For proper sitting posture, sit up as straight as you can and slightly relax. While walking, you should stand with your shoulders back, head up, and straight back. If slouching is hard for you to avoid, then set reminders for yourself or download an app that will inspire you to maintain better posture.
Stretch and Exercise
A few more useful tactics include stretching and exercise. There are many stretches that you can do to help your posture. These focus on stretching out your back, which relaxes it and makes it more comfortable for you to hold good posture.
Here are a few useful stretches:
- Start in a kneeling position. Bend over and extend forward with your arms as low as you can without moving your legs. Hold this position for 10 seconds and repeat.
- Stand up with your arms by your side. Slowly bend over in a bow and reach toward your toes. Grab behind your ankles and pull your upper body towards your legs, making sure to keep them straight. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat.
In addition to stretching, you should start doing exercises that strengthen your core and back. These are the muscles responsible for maintaining posture, so strengthening them means it will be easier for you to stay upright.
For exercises, consider things like crunches, oblique leg lifts, squats, push-ups, pull-ups, and side planks. An exercise like squats is useful because it requires you to have good posture. Without it, you won’t be able to lift the weight as your back will be too weak. Whatever you decide to do, pick something that you can stick to that will help motivate you to keep sitting and standing correctly.
Adjust Your Environment
Another helpful strategy is to adjust your environment. If holding proper posture is difficult for you, then why not make it easier on yourself? Instead of working harder to sit upright, you can make your environment naturally conducive for good posture.
The two most important things to target are your chair and desk. Your chair matters more because it’s what you sit in. You need something comfortable while still designed to have you sitting upright. Something like an ergonomic mesh chair is a great choice here. For your desk, you should make it so that you need to sit higher. You want to have your monitor positioned at eye level or higher when you’re sitting upright rather than when slouched.
A good way to make this happen is with an adjustable desk. You can raise it to the exact level you need to support good posture. Alternatively, you could ditch your chair and go for a standing desk. Humans aren’t meant to sit, so you can ease the strain on your body by standing instead. Remember that you don’t need to tackle the challenge of posture by yourself. Use your work environment to your advantage and have it help you sit properly.
Always Consider Your Posture
As a final thought, you should always consider your posture. Even if you understand how important it is to sit and stand properly and you know how to do it, that information won’t do you any good if you aren’t practicing it regularly. Simply sitting up for a few minutes is a good start, but that’s all it is. If you find yourself quickly falling back into old habits like slouching, then you aren’t remembering to maintain your posture.
This is a mistake that you need to actively avoid making. It’s natural for your body to start slouching, but you need to correct it whenever it happens. If you want to make a serious change in your life, it often requires significant effort. Fixing your posture is no different and it takes a conscious commitment.
No matter where you are and what you’re doing, whether that’s driving in the car, sitting at work, walking the dog, or relaxing on the couch, remember your posture. You’ll greatly appreciate how much better your back feels!
To keep up the health of your back and spine, you need to have good posture. This means sitting and standing tall with a straight back. Bad posture is a rampant issue that many people fail to fix. You can avoid this by taking active measures to keep your posture up.
A few of them include stopping slouching, stretching and exercising, adjusting your environment, and remembering to always consider your posture. It certainly won’t be easy to improve your posture, but it’s doable if you care enough.