In the age of the laptop, mobile phone and tablet, we are becoming a generation with bad posture. Which are the worst sitting positions for your health?
We hunch over our computers, we perch on bar stools and slouch on the sofa on our phones. We are all guilty of doing it but perhaps some more than others. Below are a few of the worst sitting positions and how we can look to correct them to improve our posture and general health.
1. The Hunch
We all recognize it, perched on a chair, shoulders are forward, and pelvis is tilted backwards which stops you from falling forward. One of the most common sitting positions, this posture creates a C shaped spine which due to the nature of what our spine is for (to handle the force that is pushing downwards), means that we are asking for pain and long-term strain.
How to correct it? – Roll the shoulders upwards and backwards, arms to the side If you can keep your shoulder blades tucked in, you are preventing the dreaded C shape.
2. The Lean
Unless you are in motion (i.e. in a car or place), you don’t need to support your back when you sit down.
How to correct it? – Try and be aware of how you sit, if you are leaning back, pull yourself up and rest your entire back against a chair/sofa, and not just your upper back.
3. The Lap look
This is one of the classic sitting positions that we all do thanks to our phones. When we look down at our lap, the weight of the head is pulling at the spine. This will put a strain on your upper back and may lead to tension headaches.
How to correct it? – If you do need to look up or down, use your eyes instead of your body.
4. A Low Chair
When your seat is too low you sink into the seat causing your pelvis to tilt backwards and your spine curves.
How to correct it? – Keep the body at a 90-degree angle to your thighs oh and get a better chair!
5. Floor Sitting
If you are sitting on your floor with your arms spread wide behind you, this is messing with the spine’s natural curve.
How to correct it? – Kneel with the top of your feet on the ground and sit up straight. This will give the feet a good stretch, as shoes including running trainers can turn up the toe and shorten the muscle,s which will impair your mobility.
If you are particularly flexible you could squat if you want to sit on the floor. Your heels should be together, toes are outwards and the chest is up.
It is really important to keep a good posture and if you don’t, you need to train the body to stand, walk, sit and lie in positions where there is the least amount of strain on the muscles and ligaments.
With good posture you can hope to:
- Keep your joints and bones in the correct alignment so that the muscles in the body are being used properly
- Decrease the wearing of joint surfaces which could lead to arthritis
- Decrease the stress on the ligaments that hold the joints of the spine together
- Prevent fatigue in the muscles as they will be being used more efficiently
- Prevent backache and pains
- Have a much better appearance by standing up straight
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