Standing or sitting correctly has some serious health benefits. This is how you can get good posture (and why you should)
You’re doing it now, even though you’re probably not paying attention. “For most of us, posture is a subconscious habit, instead of something we actively pay attention to,” says physiotherapist Marcus Dripps. And it’s more than just standing up straight. “There are two types of posture – your static posture: how you hold yourself when you’re sitting or standing, and your dynamic posture: the posture you use when you’re doing something active, like walking.”
THE BENEFITS OF GOOD POSTURE
Lower Stress Levels
Sit upright when you’re faced with a stressful situation, and you’ll automatically be more resilient to the effects of stress. New Zealand researchers who made the discovery say it’s because, when compared to slouching, sitting up straight helps to instantly boost self-esteem and improve mood.
Make an effort to walk with a spring in your step and an upright, open chest, and you’ll feel like you’ve got more energy. Walking that way helps to open up the same biological pathways that exercise works on to increase happiness.
Adopting a posture that opens up the body, so you seem to take up more physical space. This has a psychological knock-on effect. It helps you behave in a way that makes you look like you’re in charge. US researchers say the tactic also convinces the people around you that you’re worthy of their respect.
Research has linked the degree to which you sit with “forward head posture” (that hunched-over, head-out posture you slip into when you’re struggling to read something on a computer screen) with more frequent, longer-lasting headaches.
Lower Back Pain
The wrong posture increases the risk of neck pain, while the right posture helps to prevent and reduce lower back pain.
Better Tolerance To Pain
PERFECT YOUR POSTURE
These five strategies will improve your posture and the impact it has on your health.
1 Strive for a neutral body position
2 Don’t stay in one position for too long
3 Pay attention to your body when using technology
Using a tablet computer puts up to five times more strain on neck muscles, because of the posture we adopt when we use them – head forward and shoulders hunched. That same posture is also the reason why at least 50 per cent of people who work on a computer has, what’s called, kyphosis, or a slightly rounded back.
4 Tilt the seat of your chair downwards
5 Download a “Posture” App
TEXT: BAUERSYNDICATION.COM.AU / PHOTOS: 123RF.COM