Remember being told when you were younger to sit up straight? Well, whoever told you was right. Good posture is crucial to your health. It reduces your risk of injury, supports lung function, and allows your muscles to align properly. Not to mention that it makes you look taller and slimmer. Poor posture has the opposite effect.
The Dangers of Bad Posture
Prolonged sitting, poor form when lifting, hunching, and slouching can affect your posture on long term. This puts you at risk for muscle pain and soreness, injuries, and even arthritis. Surprisingly, bad posture can also affect your mood and trigger depression.
According to a recent study, subjects who walked in a slouched posture reported low energy and depression symptoms. Tiredness, anger, and irritability are common complaints among those who sit for long hours.
Researchers have also found that poor posture may affect digestion and disrupt metabolic function. It also contributes to that belly pouch you’re trying to get rid of. Moreover, it restricts oxygen and blood flow, leading to breathing difficulties. Shoulder, neck, back, and wrist pain are more likely to occur in those with bad posture.
Back to the Basics: Why Good Posture Is Important
Maintaining good posture is just as important as eating healthy and working out. It allows for the proper functioning of your internal organs, spine, and ligaments. Your breathing becomes easier, your circulation improves, and your muscles work more efficiently.
When you keep your back straight, your body uses less energy to support your weight and stay balanced. This helps reduce muscle fatigue and makes daily activities easier to perform. Additionally, good posture helps decrease the wear and tear of your joints, leading to a lower risk of herniated discs, arthritis, and musculoskeletal disorders.
Luckily, it’s never too late to fix your posture. Simple exercises, such as standing straight up against a wall and pressing your lower back into the floor, can make all the difference.
Remember to keep your back straight while working on the computer. Watch your form when lifting weights.
Work your back muscles to keep them strong. Bent over rows, T-bar rows, back extensions, and lat pull-downs are all ways to do so. These moves will strengthen the muscles around your spine, which in turn, helps improve your posture.