Attention office workers! Your posture might be causing you pain!

Today, one of our students, Suze, completing her placement at our Longevity Exercise Physiology locations at  Edgecliff and Randwick, discusses the importance of posture in today’s society.

Have you ever realised how human function has changed as we’ve evolved over the last hundred thousand years? Our ancestors were in constant movement as they relied on hunter-gathering tactics to survive. Can you imagine how physically fit they might have been?

Thanks to the many technological advancements over the past few decades, food has become more convenient to retrieve, we have phones to stay in touch with friends and family, and many people are able to work from the comfort of their own home. Unfortunately, this means that society is more sedentary than ever, and prolonged periods of not moving or sitting can wreak havoc on your posture.

If you’re an office worker, you’ve probably caught yourself staring at your screen with your back slumped and your head poked out in front of your body. The average human head weighs around 5kg, so your neck muscles could be working up to three times harder to maintain that forward head posture throughout the day. Imagine the strain on your neck! If you’ve experienced soreness, tightness, or pain in your neck or shoulders, your posture might be the issue.

Whether we’re sitting or standing, our bodies are like a skyscraper. If it were built on an angle, or without the proper foundations, our structure would buckle, and other parts of the foundation will have to compensate for this lack of structural integrity. This isn’t sustainable, and it certainly isn’t conducive to building the capacity to sustain any changes in weather.

“…our bodies are like a skyscraper. If it were built on an angle, or without the proper foundations, our structure would buckle, and other parts of the foundation will have to compensate for this lack of structural integrity.”

So, what can be done to improve our postural alignment when we’re sitting at the desk for most of the day?

  1. Break up periods of sitting by standing and going for a quick walk around the home or office every hour (set an alarm!)
  2. Move around when you’re on the phone – stand up, change positions, walk around the room if you can
  3. Keep a small or medium glass of water by your desk instead of a large water bottle. This will force you to get up and refill when you’ve run out

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Stretching: a number of stretches can be done to reduce muscle tightness and improve our alignment. To improve our mobility, it is recommended that stretches are held for between 10 – 30s, and can be repeated up to 3 times.

5. Strength training: stretching our muscles can help reduce muscle tightness, however a resistance training program guided by an Exercise Physiologist or Personal Trainer can strengthen the muscles that work to keep your body in correct alignment long term.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Written by Suze

If you or someone you know is experiencing postural pain or tightness in your shoulders and neck, Longevity Exercise Physiologists are here to help.

Call Longevity Exercise Physiology Drummoyne, EdgecliffMarrickvilleBella VistaRandwick, PymbleBalmain, Neutral Bay, Coburg – Melbourne, and Barrie, Ontario – Canada  on 1300 964 002 to enquire today!

 

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