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Health Benefits of Good Posture

Sit up straight! Stop slouching! You’ll end up like that forever!

We have all heard these phrases over and over again in regards to our posture. It might have been your teacher, your mom, or even your doctor telling you to sit up straight, and as it turns out, it’s for good reasons!

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What Is A Good Posture

According to The Cleveland Clinic,

“Posture is the position in which you hold your body upright against gravity while standing, sitting or lying down. Good posture involves training your body to stand, walk, sit and lie in positions where the least strain is placed on supporting muscles and ligaments during movement or weight-bearing activities. Proper posture:

  • Keeps bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used properly.
  • Helps decrease the abnormal wearing of joint surfaces that could result in arthritis.
  • Decreases the stress on the ligaments holding the joints of the spine together.
  • Prevents the spine from becoming fixed in abnormal positions.
  • Prevents fatigue because muscles are being used more efficiently, allowing the body to use less energy.
  • Prevents strain or overuse problems.
  • Prevents backache and muscular pain.
  • Contributes to a good appearance.”

An emphasis on good posture is all over the place these days. Offices are investing in stand up desks, ergonomic chairs, and everything in between. Why? Because POSTURE MATTERS. Here are 10 proven benefits of good posture:

1. Good posture portrays power. 

Posture is a great representation of power. In a study conducted by Amy Cuddy, author of “Power Posing,” Cuddy found that those with an open, expansive posture reflect they are high in power. People with narrow, closed postures reflect they are lower in power.

In fact, a person’s posture can not only display power, it can produce power. Those with high power poses radiate more feelings of dominance, risk-taking, and power, while also having reduced anxiety.

2. Kiss back pain goodbye.

Proper posture actually reduces back and neck pain. When you slouch, this can strain the back and neck muscles while putting stress on the spine. This can create spinal misalignments and even constrict blood vessels and nerves.

The Cleveland Clinic states that those who suffer from back pain often experience pain relief when they correct their posture.

3. Look and feel more confident.

When you sit or stand up straight, it helps you look taller, skinnier, and more successful. A study done by the Ohio State University found that people with good posture demonstrated more confidence than those who slouched. This outward confidence translated to more confidence in their thoughts as well!

4. Burn more calories.

Did you know that you can actually burn up to 350 more calories a day just by practicing perfect posture? How? By carrying yourself better, you take tension off the entire body and the entire body works and flows better!

5. Build a stronger core.

When you sit up tight and have great posture, you extend your back and allow for a neutral spine. A neutral spine allows the pelvis to position itself in such a way that the core muscles work better, and abs may appear more toned.

6. Breathe better.

An upright and proper posture opens up the airways in the lungs and helps ensure proper breathing. This means that more oxygen is able to flow throughout the body. This flow of oxygen helps the entire nervous system, organs, and other tissues throughout the body function more effectively.

7. Improve your memory and brain function.

Indiana University conducted a study focused on the link between words, memories, and posture. They found that babies’ learning abilities are affected by their posture. When they had upright and correct posture, they were better able to map new experiences and recall things.

8. Boost your mood.

Dr. Erik Peper, an internationally known expert on biofeedback and holistic health, carried out several experiments on how posture impacts energy level and the mind’s ability to generate positive and negative thoughts.

9. Reduce stress.

Stress and poor posture have a reciprocal relationship. Stress causes poor posture, and poor posture causes stress. Recent studies found that assuming correct posture when stressed can actually improve self-esteem and improve your mood. Try sitting up straight as a simple trick to reduce your stress levels!

10. Increase productivity.

Having good posture is actually linked to increased productivity. It makes you more alert, improves concentration, and increases productivity. Studies show that when you slouch, your body takes in 30% less oxygen than it can take in with good posture. This means that when you slouch, your body is expending more energy just to keep up!

How To Improve Your Posture

When sitting- 

  • Use a chair with firm lower back support
  • Keep your desk elbow high by adjusting your chair
  • Use a footrest when necessary to keep pressure off of the back of the legs
  • Sit with your knees slightly higher than your hips
  • Get up and take breaks to walk around at least once an hour
  • Do not sit on your wallet

When working on a computer-

  • Take a one minute break for every 20 minutes of work in front of a screen
  • Position the screen so that it is 15 degrees below eye level

When sitting in a car-

  • Adjust the seat so that you sit with your knees slightly higher than your hips
  • Place a small pillow in the small of your lower back

When sleeping-

  • Sleep on your side with your head supported by a pillow and your neck in a neutral position and sleep with your knees bent and a pillow placed between them to reduce spinal stress
  • Sleep on your back, making sure your pillow allows your neck to be in line with your spine

When lifting-

  • Lift with your legs instead of your back
  • Stand close to the object you’re lifting and lift from a squat position
  • Never twist or lift from the waist

Pure Chiropractic Can Help Your Posture

Drs. Chris and Krystal Hohn of Pure Chiropractic in Howell, Michigan can help correct and improve your posture! We believe that good posture is good health. It allows you to live your life with more energy, less stress, improved focus, and better mood.

Unfortunately, in today’s day and age, posture related problems are only increasing. People are spending more and more time in front of a screen, hunched over a phone, sitting at a desk, driving cars, and living sedentary lifestyles with little emphasis on how it impacts our spine.

If you believe your posture could use some help and correction, contact our offices today for your appointment. Your spine controls every function in your body — it’s time to make sure yours is properly aligned! (810) 588-4036