In the previous Post, we discussed about some of the common causes of headaches. Some of the common causes of headaches include having improper postures while sitting, standing/walking, exercising and sleeping.
The main problem about improper postures is that they cause our body to improperly contract the wrong muscles and joints, thus causing undue stress and strain on our joints and muscles in the long run.
Don’t worry, years of mistakes can be corrected once you have got the postures right.
The importance of sitting has never been that underscored till recently. With many adults spending long hours at their office chair or at their comfy couch at home, sitting with the right posture is of absolute importance. The following are some important points to take note while sitting:
- Your head should be above your shoulders. Don’t slouch forward. Slouching causes uneven pressure between your vertebrae and eventually neck and/or lower back problems.
- Relax your shoulders. Frequent tensing of your shoulders will easily slouch your body forward.
- The top your monitor’s screen should be about even or a slightly lower than eye level. The monitor should be directly in front of you, not to the side. Additionally, position the monitor so there is no glare on the screen. If this isn’t possible, you may need a glare screen. Glare not only causes eye strain but may make you sit abnormally in order to see the screen clearly.
- Your hands should be kept in-line with your forearms. Bending your wrist up/down or to either side causes the tendons running through your wrists to rub against their protective sheaths more than necessary and become damaged.
- The back of your chair should not only support your back but help maintain the natural hollow in your lower back. Many chairs have a built-in lumbar support for this reason. The back should be adjustable up and down and back and forward. Ideally, the back should be able to be adjusted while you are seated.
Having mentioned these points, I have to emphasize that changing your sitting position every 10 minutes will help in encouraging blood flow. Better blood circulation helps in reducing strain to the back, the neck as well as the joints.
Many people have the bad habits of slouching and hunching. These bad habits not only cause us to look bad and lowers our confidence, they also causes our body to adopt an improper posture.
Do you know that when you are about to run, you are actually slouching forward? Slouching forward makes us more streamline which enables us to move faster. As our pace of life becomes faster than ever, we also tend to hurry and rush to places. As we hurry and rush, we are actually unconsciously adopting the running position as well. Therefore we have to be mindful of how we walk and stand.
The following are some points that help in improving standing or walking posture:
- Relax your shoulders and let your eyes look straight. When you look straight, you are actually easing yourself of distracting thoughts and thus relaxing. This relaxation helps you to relax your muscles which may be involuntarily tensing you up and making you rush unconsciously.
- Let your hips lead your body when you are walking. You will realise that you will be walking with more poise, impact and importantly, properly.
- When standing, make sure your shoulders and hips are level, parallel to the ground. The head should be right between the shoulders.
- The arms need to hang in a comfortable position, sort of relaxed, with the first finger and thumb pointing forward. The knees should basically point straight forward while the feet will normally have a slight turn out-wards.
You may find unnatural and uncomfortable while trying to adopt the right postures while sitting and standing/walking. Please let me assure you that this is perfectly normal! After all, you have been adopting the wrong postures for years; it is definitely not going to be easy achieving the right postures instantly.
As the following saying goes ‘a journey of a thousand miles begin with the first step’, so long as you are consciously attempting the right postures, sooner or later you will not even realise that unconsciously, you are already adapted to the right postures.
Stay tune to the next article where we will share with you on the right postures for exercising and sleeping
Additional Reading of the same series