Posture might not be something you think about on a daily basis. However, good posture is something you should be exercising every day. Indeed, you will reap health benefits from good posture and endure negative effects from bad posture.
If you need to improve your posture, be conscious of your habits and strengthen your muscles. Consider using aids, such as a posture-correcting brace, to help you achieve your posture goals.
What Is Good Posture?
Good posture is more than an upright body. In fact, doctors consider a neutral spine to be the result of good posture, meaning the way you sit or stand shouldn’t put more pressure on one part of your skeleton than others. When you move, then, your starting position means you don’t put strain on the supporting ligaments and muscles.
When standing, your bones should be aligned, as if you could draw a straight line from earlobe to ankle. What’s more, your knees should be slightly bent.
When seated, your back should be straight with your shoulders naturally back. Your knees should feature a 90-degree bend, and your feet should be flat on the floor.
What Are the Benefits of Good Posture?
The most obvious benefit of good posture is lack of back pain. However, good posture does more than just prevent pain. Indeed, your skeleton, muscles, and tendons are designed to work together. When you have good posture, your core muscles are engaged, and they’ll remain strong.
Surprisingly, good posture affects your insides, too. Because your organs are in their right place, and no veins are compressed, they can receive the right amount of blood. As a result, circulation and digestion are improved. What’s more, your lungs function at their best capacity, meaning you can breathe more easily.
What Are the Negative Effects of Bad Posture?
Bad posture has as many negative effects as good posture has positive — maybe more. When you slouch, the core muscles aren’t engaged. As a result, your positioning puts undue strain on the wrong muscles and tendons. The obvious effect is pain, but you can also develop microtears in both over time. The condition can even become chronic.
The spine especially suffers from bad posture. When it’s not in its neutral position, the spine can develop curvature in unnatural areas. When new curvature develops, the spine’s ability to absorb shock and even keep you balanced can be compromised. What’s more, the vertebrae can become misaligned, potentially leading to herniated discs.
How Can You Achieve Good Posture?
The best way to correct your posture is to be conscious of it. Make an effort to stand up straight with your shoulders back but relaxed. Just make sure your core muscles are engaged. Likewise, sit in the correct position, and get up frequently to encourage blood circulation.
You may need some aids to achieve good posture. For example, your work chair may not encourage good posture. You might need a special cushion to make the chair more ergonomic. Likewise, if your feet don’t reach the floor, you should get a pedestal so they can rest comfortably.
Finally, you could invest in a posture-specific pillow to maintain good positioning while sleeping.
If your postural problems have been long-standing, being conscious of your posture may not be sufficient. You might need to engage in stretches and exercises to get your muscles back into shape. In the meantime, another aid you could consider is a back brace.
Posture-correcting braces come in different forms, depending on the target problem. One option is a small harness that pulls your shoulders back. Another is an extra-wide belt that supports your lower back. Manufacturers have also devised a full harness that supports the whole spine.
Posture aids are meant to be a temporary fix. If you rely on them long-term, your core muscles won’t strengthen. However, posture correctors can train your muscles into the correct position. They can also offer support to relieve pain while you retrain your muscles.
Consult with the experts at Corner Home Medical about the right braces and aids to correct your posture.