After weeks, actually months of having neck pain when driving for more then 30 minutes or sitting for any length of time, I was in agony. I would need to put a heat pack on my neck and the pain was gone just like that so no need to change anything (quick fix). But it started to get worse while sitting doing some work or study. Time to see a specialist . Turns out an accident from a few years ago was effecting my posture which i wasn’t aware of. I was told if i didn’t do some work on it now it will get worse and effect me down the line maybe a bit like the picture below.
When coaches talk about posture to clients the normal reaction is ‘Ya ya lets get training’. It may not be your goal to have good posture but it’s as important as eating healthy, exercising regularly, getting a good nights sleep, drinking plenty of water, loosing body fat and managing stress. Good posture is a part of good health. Everyone wants to be healthy and good posture is a part of it and often neglected by us or we don’t realise that our posture is poor and needs some work, myself included.
So whats cause poor posture?
- Weak muscles, muscles imbalances
- Careless sitting, standing and sleeping habits
- Being over weight
- Accidents,injuries and falls
- Poor sleep support
- Foot problems and poor foot wear
You may not be aware of this even with signs of tight and achy muscles, joint stiffness, fatigue, etc. that we normally blame on our training or something else we have done and continue on with it. But we need to stay on top of it by building it in to our habits.
So why why’s it so important?
- Helps prevents backache and muscular pain.
- Keeps bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used correctly
- Decreases the stress on the ligaments holding the joints of the spine together.
- Helps prevent the spine from becoming fixed in abnormal positions.
- Helps prevents fatigue because muscles are being used more efficiently, allowing the body to use less energy.
- Allows us to breath properly and avoid health complications
- Contributes to a good appearance and confidence
- Optimises our sport performance
With the way we live our lives we always need to be aware of our posture:
- sitting at work all day on a computer
- studying for exams, stuck in traffic
- watching tv, eating our dinner
- looking down at our iPads
- standing for long periods
These habits are always going to have an affect on the way our body moves and feels.
So how do we change and improve our posture? By
- getting an in-depth assessment
- a vist to an osteopath or physical therapist
- staying on to of our mobility drills
- strengthening your core, getting a regular massage
- have a healthy work space with a good chair
- sitting corrrectly in the car or at a computer a great help is by setting an alarm to remind you to realign yourself (but we need to know how to realign ourselves first)
- having a a good matress and pillow.
Below is a quick video showing part of our postural assessment.
So what ever your at now think to yourself are you in pain or is your posture affecting you.
This is you chance to change.
Thanks for reading guys.
Steve’s note: this video is aimed at showing some basic postural positions. There is a lot more that could be added that but these points are a good place to start.