The Power of Posture
Posture is important for overall health and performance. Due to the complexity of the spine and pelvis there are many things that can go wrong to cause pain and dysfunction. Asymmetries in posture arise from how we use our bodies. For example, neck and pain are common complaints from people whose jobs require prolonged sitting at desks/computers or driving. Prolonged sitting often results in slumped sitting in an excessive “C” curve and forward head posture. The generalized result of this posture is long weak muscles in the mid to low back and short tight muscles in the abdomen, chest and neck. One of the best ways to avoid spinal problems is to pay close attention to your overall body alignment during your daily activities. For example, check your ergonomic set up at your desk and take frequent breaks to move your body and reset your alignment. When you’re exercising, always use good body position and core function strategies to improve your movement efficiency.
Strategies for change:
- Know your spine: be aware of what movements or activities that cause your back pain. Awareness of the condition of your spine, imbalances that exist or functional weaknesses can give you the knowledge that you need to fortify your body, or change your movement patterns. This, in turn, can help you to avoid problematic activities and back troubles. Even a test of flexibility and core muscle strength can shed a lot of light on potential weaknesses that might leave you vulnerable to a neck or lower back injury.
- Be sure to sit, stand and move in the best position possible in order to prevent muscle imbalance, joint stress and increased pressure on the intervertebral discs of your spine.
- Progressive warm-up prior to activities
- Improve your general fitness by participating in low impact aerobics, like walking or swimming that keep muscles balance with the reciprocal action of the arms and legs and build up general strength.
- Build up your core stability. Your core acts like a corset around your spine, which can reduce stress on your bones, joints , fascia and muscles.
- Improving your general strength will decrease the load on your spine while moving and lifting.
- Work on the flexibility in your hips and legs allows for good postural alignment and unrestricted movement.
Posture can contribute to your musculoskeletal problems. Poor posture causes faulty movement patterns, which leads to pain and injury.
If you would like to learn more about correct postural alignment, please join Robin Bone, Physiotherapist for a workshop on Wed May 31, 2017 at 6-7:30 pm for $30 plus tax. Call Pilates Manitoba at 204.487.2287 or firstname.lastname@example.org to register.