If you are currently working on improving your health and fitness, it’s also a good idea to take some steps to improve your posture. A lot of people tend to overlook their posture unaware that a good posture can help them prevent back and neck pain. It can also improve your self-confidence and your health in general. Below are 17 easy ways on how you can improve your posture.
1. Avoid High Heels – This is definitely for ladies. If you want to improve your posture, it’s recommended that you avoid high heels as much as possible. Well, you could wear them when necessary, but not always. Heels can change your body’s COG or centre of gravity and throw off its normal alignment. If you must wear heels, consider wearing the smaller types if you mind your posture.
2. Hold your phone or Tablet Correctly –Bending your neck while using your phone or tablet could affect your posture. The right way to do it is to hold it straight in front of you to avoid bending your head down. If you are reading from a tablet placed on a table, prop it up perpendicularly to the table.
3. Work on Your Core Strength – Doing exercises that can strengthen your core can not only help you stand taller but can also go a long way in improving your posture. Yoga is one of best core strengthening exercises as it also helps improve your balance. Another exercise to try is Pilates.
4. Learn How to Breathe Properly – Do you know that your posture can be affected by how you breathe? Yes, this is true. To improve your posture, breathe using your diaphragm and do other breathing exercises that can lengthen your spine, engage your waist and lower core muscles.
5. Don’t Slouch – If you work on a desk, it’s good to correct your posture regularly. You can do this by straightening your back and making sure that your feet are flat on the floor. Ensure that your weight is well distributed on your both hips. You should also stretch and move around your chair about every 30 minutes.
6. Learn to adjust your posture in every situation – We should not think about our posture only when we are at our desks. When driving, you need to sit up straight. Also in the kitchen adjust the counters to avoid hunching over.
7. Get Ergonomic Chairs With Enough Lumbar Support – This is a good tip to improve posture at the workplace. You should consider chairs with a natural curve that fits in your lower back hollow. The chair should allow your spine to be in contact with the chair’s backrest right from your upper back to your tailbone.
8. Eating Healthy – Yes, bad eating habits could affect your posture. We know that calcium helps to strengthen our bones and if have low levels of this mineral, your posture could be at stake. Make sure that you take foods that are in rich in calcium and seek your doctor’s approval before taking calcium supplements. Another nutrient to add to your diet is vitamin D as it helps strengthen our bones as well. You can also get vitamin D from sunlight.
9. Fix Your Work Station – Whether you are a disk jockey or work on a desk, you should have your workstation set up properly. Ensure the desk and chairs have the right height for you. The height of your chair should allow your feet to stay flat on the floor.
10. Test your posture and learn to stand properly – You can test your neck and back posture by standing against a wall. Check the areas you need to work on. While standing, ensure your weight is well distributed on your both feet.
11. Use Apps that Help Improve Posture – It can be difficult to remember to sit or stand properly, but thankfully, there are now apps that can help us with that. For instance, if you have a Mac, you could download Nekoze app that utilises the device’s camera to monitor your posture. When you slouch, a cat-like icon will warn you. There are also other good apps for iOS and Android that you can download and install to help you monitor your posture.
12. Keep Your Ears, Shoulders and Hips Aligned – Whether you’re sitting or standing, keeping your ears, shoulders, and hips in alignment can significantly improve your posture. You should resist the temptation to move your head forward. When you learn how to do it correctly, maintain that and you will see a big change in your posture.
13. Stand up and Move – If your school life or job involves a lot of sitting, you can find it hard to resist from slouching. Your muscles can slump down when they tire due to prolonged sitting. You need to get up and move around as much as you can. As mentioned above, moving once for every 30 minutes is okay.
14. Develop an Awareness of Your Posture – Even when you have started your posture improvement program, you may go for long hours in the wrong posture. Yes, you might start it well in the morning, but after getting busy at work or school, you will likely forget. You can curb this bad habit by setting up some reminders such as an alarm on your phone or by placing Post-it notes on your PC monitor to help you remember to sit up straight.
15. Fix Your Bad Sleeping Habits – While sleep is important to relax your body after a long day at work or school, it should be done properly otherwise it may affect your posture and cause neck pain. You should invest in a pillow or mattress that can support your body with the correct amount of softness and firmness. Also, avoid sleeping on your back to avoid straining your spine.
16. Visit a sports therapist – Visiting a sports therapist on a regular basis can significantly improve your posture if you combine with the above tactics. Sports therapy is great at relieving tightness in the muscles and allowing for optimum range of movement in all of your joints.
17. Perform Regular Stretching Exercises – lastly, stretching exercises can also improve your posture as they help to loosen up all the ligaments and tendons deep within your back. This prevents them from tightening up and affecting your posture.
There are many ways on how you can improve your posture and the above are some of them. By learning how to sit and stand properly, you can greatly improve your posture and prevent back problems.