Your posture directly affects your health. Bad posture increases the pressure on your spine and when your spine isn’t functioning properly it can lead to other issues, such as back pain and fatigue.
As a chiropractor I am seeing an increasing number of people with posture related problems. The main reason for this increase is that people are sitting more and more and moving much less. The human body was made to move. Our spines weren’t meant to sit at a computer for 6 to 8 hours a day, so office workers may be prone to things like forward head posture, when the head is sitting too far forward. For every 2 centimetres your head sits forward you’re adding 4-5 kilograms of unnecessary weight on your spine. Kids can also develop a forward posture as well from being hunched over laptops or videogames for hours on end or burying their head while text messaging.
A simple procedure to follow to decrease the bad effects of a sitting work posture is the “20/2 rule”. That means for every 20 minutes of sitting at your desk or computer you should get up and move around for 2 minutes. Now many people think that they are far too busy to get up every 20 minutes but the people who follow this simple rule find they are much more alert and do their work much more efficiently and make fewer mistakes due to fatigue due to an achy neck and back. They also find they finish the day feeling much more energised and pain free.
I also encourage people to Just Start Walking. Walking is simple, inexpensive, achievable and an easy way to start improving your posture. Walking helps position your spine in the natural shape it was designed for- being upright. Regular walking will also build core strength, which is an important part of maintaining good posture and this will help you to keep better posture during your other daily activities.
Other ways to improve postural fitness and spinal health is to visit your local chiropractor for a professional posture assessment. Being a five year university trained spinal health expert, your chiropractor can help you achieve better posture and a healthier spine. I’d also recommend visiting the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia and Just Start Walking Website,
To get tips on how to walk properly, find out more information on the link between walking and posture as well as making use of handy tools to set walking goals or find a walking event. You can also download the free Just Start Walking mobile phone app to help track your walks, log your walking history, share your walks with friends online or even locate your local Chiropractors’ Association of Australia member chiropractor.