Advice Leaflet on Good Posture
Posture is defined as ‘intentionally or habitually assumed position’
It is the position that our bodies maintain when we are standing, sitting or lying down. Good posture is the ability to maintain a balanced and efficient position whilst we constantly change activity. It involves the weight of the body being evenly distributed to enable movement with out placing excessive strain on any part of the body
Benefits of good posture:
- Enables you to work and play for longer because your body is working more efficiently. Undertaking the same activity with poor posture will result in the body tiring much faster and may result in pain and injury.
- Reduces the likelihood of injury by reducing the stress on the muscles and ligaments holding the spinal joints together.
- Helps prevent muscle strain, repetitive injuries/ disorders. General body aches and pains, back pain, neck pain and muscular pain.
- Helps to reduce abnormal wearing of joint surfaces that could result in arthritis or joint pain. Good posture keeps bones and joints in proper alignment, thereby decreasing abnormal wearing of the joint surface.
- Can increase confidence. Good posture means you can walk, talk and sit tall without the rounded shoulders and potbelly that poor posture can result in.
- To maintain a good posture we require adequate muscle flexibility and strength, normal joint motion in the spine and other body regions as well as endurance in the postural muscles to assist in the maintenance of good posture. In addition, the ability to monitor our bodies every day for poor postural habits and how to correct these habits is essential on the ongoing maintenance of good posture. Factors like slouching, inactivity and injury can cause muscle fatigue and tension that can lead to poor posture.
General tips for good posture
Remember the following tips are reminders of what we should be doing to maintain good posture. However, if you have any particular concerns regarding your posture or are experiencing any pain, please contact a qualified health practitioner.
Regular exercise. This helps to improve your muscle strength, tone and endurance. It also means that you are helping to reduce the chance of musculoskeletal problems that can result in pain, loss of movement and daily limitations to your lifestyle.
- Stretching 2-3 times a week to improve muscle flexibility
- Stretch your neck muscles daily by slowly turning your head side to side.
- To support your back keep your stomach muscles in good shape.
- When standing gently tuck your chin in and imagine you are lifting a weight with the crown of your head, draw your shoulders back gently and gently draw your abdominal muscles in. Spread your weight equally between the ball and heel of your foot and let your arms hang relaxed at your side.
- If you are standing for prolonged periods in work, slowly shift your weight from foot to foot and from heel to toe.
- Avoid sitting in chairs with no support for prolonged periods of time. Get
up and move around every 20-25 minutes and stretch in the opposite direction to which you have been sitting/working.
- When performing deskwork avoid crossing your legs and place your ankles in front of your knees.
- Generally a firmer mattress is recommended for sleeping, but spend time finding the right mattress for you. Some individuals find a softer mattress will reduce back pain.
- Similarly everyone has different pillow requirements and the right pillow can reduce neck pain in wakening hours and ensure a comfortable nights sleep.
- Try to sleep on your side and use a pillow. Placing a pillow between your knees as you sleep may assist with maintaining good posture.
At Pure Physio Clinic it is all about you…
As a specialised musculoskeletal physiotherapy practice, Pure Physio Clinic will work with you in order to provide targeted, expert advice in relation to postural conditioning and postural rehabilitation plans.