“Stand up straight” is such a common thing to hear, that many people have lost what it means. While it can mean the metaphorical “stand confidently”, its literal meaning is still worth looking into. There’s a lot of value that comes with “standing up straight”, otherwise known as good posture.
Let’s take a look at why you should consider it, and how to start fixing your posture.
Increase Your Self Confidence…and Height.
Perhaps the most immediate impact you’ll feel when you try to adopt a good posture is a sense of height. Slouching or bad posture often leads to a loss in height, no matter how few centimeters it is, it still affects your overall height. And this increase in height often translates to increase self-confidence. Which can be a good thing if you need to present yourself in front of people.
Decrease Chronic Pains, Especially Back Pain.
For office workers forced to sit in a chair and type away on a computer for hours on end, back pain is a major issue. However, good posture isn’t just limited to when you’re standing, but also when you’re sitting down. Back hunched, neck forward, and shoulders dropped forward isn’t exactly the best typing position as it will lead to a wide variety of problems. And these can all be rectified just by keeping good posture when typing.
Because good posture promotes better alignment of organs, the digestive system functions better. This results in fewer stomach pains and even prevents digestive problems such as GERD and constipation, diseases that are commonly compounded by a constantly slouched position.
You Feel More Energetic.
Because slouching and bad posture is a “lazy” position that doesn’t activate the muscles, our muscles tend to become weaker and less enduring. By maintaining good posture, you’re training your body to use energy wisely, and going from a resting position to an active position won’t take as much energy.
Improved Mobility and Function.
As we grow older, our body needs more emphasis on proper posture and good form. Bad posture creates damage to our connective tissue, as it’s not the natural position of our body. Therefore, when we maintain good posture, we’re putting less stress on our joints, making them retain mobility and function even as we age.
How to Improve Your Posture
Now that you know why good posture is important, let’s take a look at a few simple ways you can begin improving your posture. Always remember that it won’t take just a day- it’s a constant process that will take you months, or even years. You just have to keep at it.
Visit a Doctor.
First and foremost, you want to visit a doctor to make sure that your posture isn’t symptomatic of a bigger issue. If it is, they’re most likely going to recommend you to therapists. This is particularly useful as some cases might need specific therapy, such as Schroth therapy for scoliosis, physical therapy, and many others.
Exercise brings a lot of benefits to the table, and aside from a healthier weight or stronger bones and muscles, it also helps promote good posture. There are a lot of exercises that help you promote better posture. Therapeutic exercises designed to specifically target and train your posture are great exercises, to begin with, but eventually, you want to complement this with low-intensity weight training to teach your muscles and bones to keep good posture throughout.
Use Ergonomic Equipment.
A common reason why we develop bad posture is simply that we don’t have the ideal equipment to support our body, especially when working. Especially with how common work-from-home is nowadays, many individuals are making do with their dining tables and chairs for their office work. However, dining tables are way too high for typing or writing, and dining chairs aren’t designed for sitting for long hours. Invest in a good quality office desk and chair, you won’t regret it.
Be Conscious About It.
A large part of having good posture is simply being highly aware of maintaining it. When walking, always make sure your spine remains neutral and your neck isn’t craning forward. If you’re wearing glasses and you find your neck constantly moving your head forward, consider getting bigger glasses with the appropriate grade. You can opt for posture braces, but just being mindful about how you stand and walk should help.
You won’t just be taller and appear more confident, you’ll genuinely be healthier and more energetic. You’ll have more opportunities to enjoy your daily life, and all because you decided to have a good posture.