Posture westwood

New Year, New Posture: The Power of Sitting up Straight

Posture is all in your head

Of all the health goals you could set for yourself in 2018, improving your posture has a tremendous upside. We are not saying it will be easy, but if you can learn to be aware of your postural shortcomings and make a concerted effort at overcoming them, you will go a long way toward improving overall wellness. The truth is, posture requires effort; it requires the coordination between body and mind. All of us know that we should, “sit up straight,” but even those of us who set out to heed this advice often find ourselves slouching and slumping after an hour or so. Step 1 is conquering the mental game- establishing awareness of when you have given up on your good posture and resetting. 

The responsibility for posture then shifts to your body

The next step is the bigger stumbling block: having the muscles in place to support good posture. At OFW Chiropractic, we begin every physical examination with a static postural analysis. The truth is, sitting already piles too much pressure on the spine to begin with; adding on poor posture simply amplifies the amount of damage being done while you sit. Our job, after establishing awareness, is to help you develop the muscles necesarry to maintain good posture throughout the day. These muscles include the core stabilizers:

  • Pelvic floor muscles
  • Transversus abdominus
  • Multifidus
  • Obliques
  • Erector spinae
  • Diaphragm

At our office in Westwood, we begin with body weight exercises that tone and condition these muscles to support the weight of your upper body no matter what position you spend most of your day in. At this point, half the battle is won. You have the pieces in place to maintain good posture throughout the day. The last piece is discipline and awareness of stagnation.

Moving regularly to protect your muscles

Even with strong supporting muscles and perfect posture, the whole system can become undone by stagnation. If you spend too long in one position, muscles stiffen and circulation suffers. This can pull your spine out of alignment and contribute to pain and dysfunction which threatens to destabilize the foundation you have built. Be aware that you need to get up and move or stretch at least once an hour. With these pieces in place, you will go a long way toward establishing spinal health and overall wellness. If improving posture is something you are interested in this new year, give our office in Westwood a call to schedule an appointment today. 

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