The Importance of Good Posture
Remember when you were a kid and tried to balance the teeter-totter with a friend? It took lots of practice and moving closer and further on the totter to achieve this. The physics behind this is a principle called torque. Torque increases the further you move away from the center or balance point.
Did you know that your head weighs 10-15lbs? It only weighs this when it is in line with your spine NOT in front of your body. When you slouch, torque makes your head feel like 20-30 lbs, and your muscles have to work twice as hard to hold your head up. Good posture takes the force and weight off the neck and allows the posterior neck muscles to not be under constant work. Tips for good posture include:
- Sit or stand up tall - imagine someone is pulling you up from the top of your head like a puppet.
- Don't stay in the same position for long periods of time - Slouching often occurs due to fatigue, so get up and move around or change positions. This takes the stress off the muscles and gives them a break. If you are working at a computer, set a timer to do exercises or move around.
- Do the exercises, especially the neck retractions/chin tucks. This exercise will help you maintain and improve neck posture.
- Don't forget about low back support! The spine is interconnected and good low back support helps to improve neck posture.
When all is said and done, posture is about practicing good HABITS!
More than the programs ...
At The Pain Center, all of our doctor's and therapists see patients outside of the programs. If you have a new injury, significant stressor, severe pain flare-up or need to adjust your home exercise program - come back to the team that you trust. We're happy to help.
Have a question about a flare up?
You are still a part of The Pain Center family. If you ever have a question, please give us a call at 616.233.3480 and we'd be happy to answer it.