Straighten up that back soldier! No seriously, if you are like the majority of the population, chances are you are suffering from symptoms correlated with bad posture. Catching a glimpse of myself in the mirror, it’s easy to see that I have forward neck/head posture. This is normally caused by a variation of weak neck muscles, seated job positions, incorrect sleeping positions, and prolonged computer or TV use. But other than the un-esthetic aspect of bad posture, there’s really not much to worry about right? Wrong.
Over time, poor posture takes a serious toll on your spine, shoulders, hips, and knees. In fact, it can cause a cascade of structural flaws that lead to back and joint pain, reduced flexibility, and compromised muscles, all of which limit your ability to burn fat or build strength.
Worst of all, bad posture can cause nerve constriction. As the spine changes in shape, the resulting movements or subluxations can put pressure on the surrounding spinal nerves. Because the nerves that connect to the spine come from all over the body, these pinched nerves can not only cause neck and back pain but may also cause pain in other unrelated areas of the body.
The following article will explore 6 common bad posture positions that many of us are making and will provide solutions to help correct these postures.
Assess Your Posture Right Now!
Wear something form-fitting and take two full-body photos—one from the front, one from the side. Relax your muscles and stand as tall as you can, feet hip-width apart. Then refer to the fix-it plan (below left) to diagnose your posture problems.
- Look at your ear. If it’s in front of the midpoint of your shoulder, your head is too far forward.
- Can you see your shoulder blade? That means your back is too rounded.
- If your hips tilt forward and you have a belly pooch (even if you don’t have an ounce of fat on your body) and your lower spine is arched significantly, this means you have an anterior pelvic tilt.
- Look at your shoulders. One shouldn’t appear higher than the other.
- Check out your kneecaps. Do they point inward, causing your knees to touch when your legs are straightened?
- See if you’re duck-footed. Your toes will point outward more than 10 degrees.
There you have it! Correcting poor posture while you are young will help prevent further more severe complications in the future. Try these corrective procedures and let us know how they work for you in the comment section below.