You may not realize it but having a healthy posture has more benefits than just standing tall and looking confident. Maintaining proper posture is just as important as exercising and practicing good nutrition. Good posture impacts our body’s overall health more than we realize.
If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of good posture, we’ll go over the top five benefits you can get from having it. We’ll also discuss how bad posture can affect your body in multiples ways.
What Is Good Posture?
Holding your body the right way when you’re seating and moving around is vital to preventing injuries, pain, and other health problems. There are two types of posture:
Static Posture: how you hold your body when you’re sleeping, standing, or sitting
Dynamic Posture: how you hold your body when you’re running, walking, or bending over
You need to make sure you have good posture in both areas. The important thing to remember is the position of your spine.
Your spine curves naturally at your low back, mid-back, and neck. To have a healthy posture, you need to maintain those curves. You don’t want to increase them.
Keep your head directly above your shoulders and your shoulders in line with your hips. If your body is in line symmetrically, those three curves will stay in a certain position with the right amount of muscle tension.
What Is Bad Posture?
Slouching or slumping over can hurt and cause damage to your spine. Poor posture can affect you in the following ways:
- Neck, back, and shoulder pain
- Poor flexibility
- Stiff joints
- Difficulty digesting food and breathing
- Misaligned muscular system
If you’re suffering from bad posture, it’s not too late to remedy it. Implementing little tweaks here and there with your posture will have huge effects on your overall wellness.
How Do I Improve My Posture?
Sitting in front of the TV, computer, or looking down at your phone can lead to poor posture. When you’re in a sitting position, your feet should be resting flat on the floor. Distribute your weight evenly between both hips.
Your back should be relatively straight, keeping in mind the natural curves of your spine. Relax your shoulders but keep your ears in line with your collarbones.
When you’re in a standing position, have a slight bend in your knees so you’re not locking your joints or hyperextending. Pull in your abdomen while keeping your feet around hip-distance apart.
The Benefits of Good Posture
When you have a good and healthy posture, the muscles around your spine support and balance your entire body. The benefits of maintaining proper posture keep your body functioning and looking healthy.
1. Decreased Low Back Pain
If you stand or sit in a slouched position for extended periods of time, it will cause low back pain. Pressure will be put on your spine, including the facet points, intervertebral discs, muscles, and ligaments. When you begin to do exercises and improve your posture, it will take the pressure off the low back, decreasing the pain you’re experiencing.
As you begin to work on improving your posture, make sure you get up every 20-30 minutes. It takes a lot of body strength to sit with proper posture, so you want to give your muscles a break. It takes time for your pain to decrease, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t experience pain relief on day one.
2. Reduced Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Pain
The joints in your jaw muscles will feel tension and stress when your head is in a “forward” position. You can experience pain while yawning, eating, talking, and even headaches from this. Correcting your neck posture will decrease the strain on the neck muscles that are connected to your jaw.
Additionally, if you are sitting for hours in front of a computer, you may begin to clench your jaw. Make sure your chair is ergonomically correct and supports a good posture. You can also invest in a standing desk so you can move from sitting to standing throughout the day.
As you release the tension in your upper shoulders and neck, it will reduce the amount of jaw pain you’re experiencing. Think about relaxing your jaw as you move through your day, especially in situations that are high-stress.
3. Fewer Headaches
The increased muscle tension in the back of your neck can result in tension headaches. Improving your posture will reduce muscle tension, improving the headaches you experience.
Check-in with your body throughout the day. As we get busy working or watching TV, our bodies begin to compress into a poor posture. Put a note by your computer or set a reminder on your phone to remind yourself to get into a proper posture alignment.
4. Improved Energy Levels
Added energy isn’t an expected benefit from improved posture but it is one nonetheless. When the joints and bones of your body are in proper alignment, your muscles don’t have to work as hard to do what they’re supposed to do. You’ll have more energy due to less fatigue.
While staying in tune with your body and when you’re posture is lagging is important, relaxing your muscles is equally as vital. You need to give your muscles a break so they don’t get overworked or start to feel painful.
5. Increase in Self Confidence
Bad posture can result in decreased self-esteem. Maintaining good posture has shown to give people more confident thoughts. If you’re going into a presentation, interview, or meeting, check in to see if your shoulders are relaxed and your spine is in alignment.
Pay attention to your posture as you walk into a room to sit in front of your computer. As your energy sees a boost and you feel less pain, your confidence will skyrocket as well.
Experience the Benefits of Improved Posture Today
The benefits of good posture are endless, from reduced pain to an improved self-image. Seeing those benefits doesn’t happen overnight, but by taking an active role in improving how you hold your body, you’ll be on the road to feeling better soon.
If you’re experiencing back pain that good posture can’t remedy, contact us today to schedule an appointment.