You’re Going To Want To ‘Sit Up And Read This’…

In the past whenever I’ve heard someone say that posture is important, or that you can do damage if you don’t sit or stand currently I didn’t quite pay attention to the importance of it.

There is nothing worse than hearing:

“Stand up straight, or ” sit properly”, and “stop slouching!…”

However sometimes it can’t be helped.

I did assume like many other generally do that I was just being nagged at that it wasn’t really a “big deal”.

Oh how I was wrong!…

I have learnt that is this anything but the case.

What surprised me is that posture is one of the biggest causes of shoulder and neck pain today….( ACTUALLY getting stuck in one particular posture is the actual culprit – moving regularly and more often will help you massively!)

And when you realise just how easy it can be to rectify, you’ll be mind blown to think why don’t more people understand the importance of ‘good posture’ and ‘moving more”

The best way for me to explain this would be to give an example, close to heart, about my best friend.

A couple of years back, he rang me up complaining of really bad shoulder pain when he was running on the treadmill.

The pain would only come on after 5-10 minutes and would stop after a while, after he had stopped running.

Now my friend loves to keep fit, i.e. running, and going to the gym but he especially liked going to a weekly spinning class. I’m sure you can imagine the position he would be in on the bike in this spinning class, he would be slumped over whilst pedalling. ( By the way he spends at least 30 hours a week hunched over a desk in his day job)

I ended up spending some time with him trying to correct his position, keeping his back straight and shoulders high, and before he knew it, as if like magic his pain had disappeared…he also began moving more and regularly changing up his postural patterns to ones in direct opposition to the usual postures he’d find himself in during the course of his day.

Now don’t get me wrong, I joked on with him saying how clever I was ha ha, but this is how easy it can be changed.

There is a few quick tips to help you spot you “bad posture” and how to improve on it.

Tip 1:

Look at yourself in the mirror. (Remember there can be signs of poor posture before pain even occurs, so if you can spot the signs early, it is often easier to fix.)

Signs of poor posture include: 

  • Slumped or rounded shoulders
  • Protruding abdomen
  • An excessive curve in your lower back
  • A caved in appearance to the chest
  • And the one people usually notice last- Pain

Now to improve your standing and walking posture “Think tall”, imagine a string being pulled from the top of your head pulling you upward.

Tip 2:

Another great tip I use myself is practice engaging your abdominal muscles and flattening your stomach. A 30-40% of maximum would do. Hold it for a few seconds, then relax, repeat this throughout the day.

Tip 3:

When standing for long periods a lot of people tend to rest their weight predominantly on one foot. Try instead standby evenly balanced on both feet and if this proves tiring, then shift the weight from one foot to another regularly.

One of the most common causes of poor posture is desk work, on computers for long periods of time, which puts the back and shoulders into an unnatural position.

Simply move more. Your neck will thank you for it

Tip 4:

Try and take a break every 30 minutes and stand up during this break.

When sitting at a desk, lean forward at your hips, bringing your trunk forward, rather then bending at the waist or neck and try to keep your lower back pressed against the support of the chair.

This should really help improve your posture and prevent and problems from surfacing.

If you have any more questions about the importance of posture, with shoulder and neck pain just ask and we’ll be more than happy to help.

Just remember….“Think Tall.” And “MOVE MORE”

Here at Apple Physio all of our team have vast experience dealing with Neck and Shoulder Pain so if you need any advice please don’t hesitate to contact us.

If you’d like more info on this, and some easy, actionable tips you can use now to start easing your neck and shoulder. We have a free neck and shoulder pain guide that we can send you. Connect with us on 01344 489398 (Bracknell) , 01753 866274 (Windsor) or email us on windsor@applephysio.com and tell us what’s going on. A member of the team can take your details and we can email you a copy.

About the Author: Leslie Abrahams and the Apple Physio team


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Leslie is a Physio, Pilates Educator and Rehab Specialist who has a special interest in Spinal Treatments, lower limb injuries, and has vast experience dealing with patients post injury or surgery. Every week, for over 20 years, 100’s of people aged 30-64+ have consulted the Apple Physio team looking for answers to concerning questions about, and for, a fast end to their health worries and physical pains and stiffness.

Leslie is a Master Trainer for the world renowned Australian Physiotherapy and Pilates Institute(APPI). He is regular key note speaker at conferences and travels internationally to present on modified exercise for rehabilitation. Leslie is the Director of Apple Physio Clinics situated in Bracknell and Windsor. Berkshire’s Specialist Private Physiotherapy Practice for People in their 30’s. 40’s, 50’s and 60’s, who want to keep healthy and active.

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