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Importance of Good Posture

We often hear that good posture is essential for good health. We recognize poor posture when we see it.

Posture is the position in which we hold our bodies while standing, sitting, or lying down. Good posture is the correct alignment of body parts supported by the right amount of muscle tension against gravity. Without good posture and the muscles that control it, we would simply fall to the ground

Normally we do not consciously maintain normal posture. Instead, certain muscles do it for us and we don’t even have to think about it. Several muscle groups including the hamstrings and large back muscles are critically important in maintaining good posture while the ligaments help to hold the skeleton together. These postural muscles when functioning properly prevent the forces of gravity from pushing us over forward. Postural muscles also maintain our posture and balance during movement

Good posture helps us stand, walk, sit, and lie in positions that place the least strain on supporting muscles and ligaments during movement and weight-bearing activities. Correct posture:
Helps us keep bones and joints in the correct alignment so that our muscles are used correctly decreasing the abnormal wearing of joint surfaces that could result in degenerative arthritis and joint pain
Reduces the stress on the ligaments holding the spinal joints together minimizing the likelihood of injury
Allows muscles to work more efficiently allowing the body to use less energy and therefore preventing muscle fatigue
Helps prevent muscle strain overuse disorders and even back and muscular pain

Poor posture can lead to excessive strain on our postural muscles and even cause them to relax, when held in certain positions for long periods of time. For example, you can typically see this in people who bend forward at the waist for prolonged time in the workplace. Their postural muscles are more prone to injury and back pain.

Several factors contribute to poor posture-most commonly, stress, obesity, pregnancy, week postural muscles, abnormally tight muscles, and stressful shoes. In addition, decrease flexibility, a poor work environment, incorrect working posture, and unhealthy sitting and standing habits can also contribute to poor body positioning.

Can I correct my poor posture? In a word, yes. Remember, however, that long-standing postural problems will typically take longer to address then short-lived ones, as often the joints have adapted to your long-standing poor posture. Conscious awareness of your own posture and knowing what posture his correct will help you consciously correct yourself. With much practice, the correct posture for standing, sitting, and lying down will gradually replace your old posture. This, in turn, will help you move toward a better and healthier body position.

Chiropractic care can assist you with improving proper posture including recommended exercises to strengthen your core postural muscles. Assistance can also be given to you with choosing proper postures for activities helping you to reduce the risk of current and future injury.

Feel free to reach out to Bowie Chiropractic, 359-7702 if you, a friend, or family member may have a health related concern that could possibly benefit from chiropractic care.

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Sitting:
1. Keep your feet flat on the floor or on a footrest, night they do not reach the floor.
2. Don’t cross your legs.
3. Keep a small gap between the back of your knees in the front of your seat.
4. Your knees should be at or below the level of your hips.
5. Adjust the backrest of your chair to support your low and mid back or use a back support.
6. Relax your shoulders and keep your forearms parallel to the ground.
7. Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time.

Standing:
1. Bear your weight primarily on the balls of your feet.
2. Keep your knees slightly bent.
3. Let your arms hang naturally down the sides of the body.
4. Keep your feet about shoulder-width apart.
5. Stand straight and tall with your shoulders pulled backward.
6. Tuck your stomach in.
7. Keep your head, your earlobes should be in line with your shoulders. Do not push your head forward, backward, or to the side.
8. Shift your weight from your toes to your heels, or one foot to the other, if you have to sand from long time.

Lying position:
1. Find the mattress that is right for you. While a firm mattress is generally recommended, some people find that softer mattresses reduce their back pain. Your comfort is important.
2. Sleep with a pillow. Special pillows are available to help with postural problems resulting from a poor sleeping position.
3. Avoid sleeping on your stomach.
4. Sleeping on your side or back is more often helpful for relief of back pain.
5. If you sleep on your side, place a pillow between your legs.
6. if you sleep on your back, keep a pillow under your knees.

Hope the tips are helpful!

Have a great week!

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