It’s easy to fall prisoner to poor posture.
Although back pain can result from a variety of conditions and injuries, the most prominent contributor is poor posture from excessive sitting. Unfortunately, in 21st century western culture, this is something we are all-too familiar with.
At HumbleWorks, we are passionate about relieving and preventing back pain caused by too much sitting.
Why does bad posture cause back pain?
Are bodies are built to be vertical, not huddled up all day. Our bones, joints and muscles are structured according to an upright position and therefore function most effectively this way. When we train our bodies to adopt an unnatural position by sitting for hours on end with shoulders slumped and spines bent over, the load on our backs is unevenly distributed. As a result, some of our joints, muscles, and bones don’t function as they were intended to, while greater strain is put on others. This causes an imbalance in the way our shoulders, back, spine and neck work together, which can often be painful.
Good posture v bad posture
What does ‘good posture’ actually look like? If you were to stand up straight, in front of a mirror, with your chin up and shoulders back, you should notice that your abdomen is upright and rigid. Your shoulders should be relaxed, and your spine should more or less run in a straight line from your neck to your pelvic region.
By contrast, poor posture can include slumping to one side, a curved upper back, a tucked in pelvis, and rounded shoulders. When seated at a desk or table, this can look like crossing the knees, slouching back, or hunching forward which strains the neck and shoulders.
Correcting your posture
The key to good posture is a simple one, but applies differently depending on whether we’re seated, standing, looking at our phones, carrying a handbag etc. Take a look at these excellent posture tips provided by the Mayo Clinic, a leading researcher and non-profit organisation focussed on overall wellbeing and healing.
One thing, however, that must be applied constantly across every bodily position is mindfulness. In order to correct our posture, whatever we may be doing, it is crucial that we remain conscious of our bodies throughout the day. Whether we’re seated at a desk, on the couch or behind the wheel, standing or walking, we need to make consistent, necessary tweaks to our posture.
Along with mindfulness, there are other methods and practices we can employ to help us tackle back pain and help correct our posture. Some of these include:
- Practicing Yoga and/or Pilates
- Visiting a chiropractor
- Standing up at your desk instead of sitting all day
Additionally, you can visit the NHS website and check out the variety of helpful resources for common posture mistakes and fixes.
If you suffer from back pain, whether it’s been developing over the years or the result of an injury, the first step is to consult your doctor or Chiropractor. They will provide analysis, treatment, and may recommend a series of exercises to rectify the pain. There’s a high chance they will also recommend a standing desk, especially if your job is desk-bound. Read one of our blog posts to find out what to look out for when selecting your ideal wooden standing desk.