Good posture…we all know it’s important. It’s a lot more than just trying not to look ‘slouchy’. Your posture affects many different aspects of your physical and mental health. Unfortunately, we can’t get into all of them here, but let’s talk about a few important results of healthy posture.
First off, healthy posture means your spine is lined up straight up and down when looking at your back. Your head, shoulders and hips are level when your feet are shoulder width apart. Looking from the side is a little more complicated. Your ear, top of your shoulder, hip, knee and ankle should all form a straight line as you can see in the image on the right. Of course your spine has curves so we should see a neck, middle back and lower back curve.
How is Your Posture?
1. Less lower back pain – even distribution of your weight body over the spinal structures. Slouching puts pressure on certain structures of the spine, including the intervertebral discs, ligaments, tendons and muscles
2. Fewer headaches – hunching forward while on screens, working at a desk or while driving pinches the nerves and muscles under the back of your head.
Sitting or standing properly opens up those nerve channels and ease pressure
3. Increased energy levels – a lot of energy is wasted holding your body in slouched positions, it decreases blood flow and lunch capacity. Sitting or standing tall allows for energy to be used for other tasks
4. Less tension in your neck and shoulders – same idea here, muscles, ligaments and tendons are constantly pulled on when you’re hunched forward
5. Increased self-confidence – One 2009 study says good posture gives you more confidence in your own thoughts.