If you pay careful attention to your body, you will find that there are certain changes in your body structure or posture that may or may not have taken place gradually, yet they cause you considerable pain and discomfort. And being in the continuous habit of staying that way, your body also adopts such improper positions. Such discomfort can even turn into chronic problems that may include soreness, stiffness, joint issues, inflammation, and what not!
Since such problems may largely be our doing, it is our responsibility to fix them as soon as we realize how they are jeopardizing our health. We may not realize it in the beginning, but poor body posture may become a life-long hazard that can interfere with our body’s motion and balance. And the worst part of it is that the modern-day lifestyle seems to have aggravated it even more.
So how do we take note of it? What are the commonly found posture mistakes that we should correct? Given below are some pointers that will help you identify them and take necessary corrective steps.
1. Posture Problems Due To Communicating With Mobile Devices
As you walk on the roads, sit to work, make food, or do anything else, talking over the phone or exchanging thoughts, opinions or messages have become the norm. But have you realized that tilting your head at odd angles, or holding the mobile device between your head and shoulders, or bending down your neck for so long can badly affect your posture? It can lead to stiffness in the muscles, soreness in the concerned joints, and discomfort in the back. So how do we correct it? While you talk, keep your mobile device or laptop at the level of your eyes. Do some stretches to relax the muscles of your back, shoulders, and the neck area.
2. Posture Problems Due To Desk Jobs
Being immersed in work, you often slip into a slouching position or hunch over your table or work desk. When the upper back doesn’t hold up the body properly, it is bound to exert pressure on the lower back and the spine. The optimum position would be to sit straight and use a chair that supports the lower back and the spinal cord.
3. Posture Problems Due To Carrying A Backpack
It may look stylish to carry a backpack on one side of your shoulder, but it is a big no-no for your spinal health and back muscles. The reason being an unbalanced distribution of load that can lead to soreness and stiffness of the back and neck muscles. The length at which the backpack hangs on your back is another issue. The belts or straps of your bag should not be hanging near the hips. Otherwise, it can exert unnecessary pressure on the shoulders, and the bag rubbing against your back also exerts pressure on the spinal cord.
4. Posture Problems Due To Driving
While you sit to drive, keep in mind that your back should be straight and square with your hips. Unless the posture is uniformly maintained, it can cause strain on the lower back. It is equally important to maintain the correct distance between your seat and the steering so that even with the pedals completely depressed, your knees are bent at an angle of about 120 degrees.
5. Posture Problem Due To Lifting Heavy Objects
There is a proper technique of lifting heavy loads that can ease the effort and prevent trauma to the muscles and the back. For that, you have to stand a bit bent in a near-squat position. Your back should be in an arched position, and the head should be held high. The position draws the strength from the muscles of your legs and lowers the strain on the back.
6. Posture Problem Due To Pillow
If the pillow that you use is not of an optimum height, it can create a lot of problems. In that case, your spine doesn’t rest at a proper level. When you lie down, make sure that your neck and head are at level with your spine. It is also a good idea to keep a pillow propped between your knees or legs when you are sleeping sideways. It alleviates any stress that your lower back, hips or pelvic muscles might be feeling.
7. Posture Problem Due To Lifting/ Carrying A Baby
When you carry a baby, you tend to adopt an arched back. It might seem like a convenient position, but, you are putting a lot of pressure on your hip ligaments, and that can cause pain and stiffness (1). What you require is to keep your head, shoulders, neck, and spine properly aligned and that will take care of any posture-related problems.
8. Posture Problem Due To Wallet Tucked Into Your Back Pocket
You may find keeping your wallet in your back pocket easy and accessible, but sitting down or driving that way can become a very unsettling affair for your back. Both your pelvic bones and the muscles of your hips are misaligned, and that can have a far-reaching consequence for your waist, hips, pelvis and even your nerves connecting those tissues.
9. Posture Problems Of Sitting Cross-Legged
Sitting cross-legged or leaning on one side can hamper blood circulation, raise your blood pressure, and cause nerve issues and varicose veins. And this is equally applicable in the case of legs crossed at the ankles. Therefore, crossing legs must be avoided, even if it endorses a certain fashion etiquette and politeness.
These were some of the factors that must be kept in mind if you don’t want to suffer unnecessary health issues due to poor posture. So, be aware of the positions that your body takes, and keep it properly aligned.