The activities that we usually do daily will have a good amount of influence on our lives. This is especially true when it comes to body physique and much of our skills and capabilities. Individuals who have to do physically intense work every day will naturally have a more toned or muscular physique when their bodies need to adapt to the work environment. In contrast, many athletes will need to train their bodies for a wide variety of movements.
But other than living an active or sedentary lifestyle, there’s also one major influencer that can also affect much of our body’s health and physique: posture. Throughout much of our childhood years, our parents and educators would say that good posture can help with a healthier life. In most cases, we are told that we should sit up in a straight position and maintain a good posture throughout the whole day.
But what’s the science behind having a good posture? Why should we be practicing good posture in the first place? Contrary to what most people think, good posture isn’t just a cultural norm but also crucial to our overall health. Here’s what you’ll need to know.
What Is Good Posture?
But before we delve deeper into how we can maintain good posture and what it can do to our body, we have first to define what “good” posture is.
Generally speaking, posture refers to a body position that we regularly assume to help support our body through many positions. Whether it’s sitting down, standing upright, or laying down, posture will play an integral role in how we support our body’s overall health.
Usually, posture is divided into two groups:
- Static Posture — This is characterized by how you will be supporting your body when you are in a stationary position. Sitting down, standing, and sleeping in a particular position usually constitutes a static posture. Although it might not seem as important as dynamic posture, putting your body in a fixed position for quite some time could lead to some health complications.
- Dynamic posture — Compared to static posture, these are positions on how you can make your body move. Walking, running, doing push-ups, and lifting weights are just some examples of dynamic posture.
Although many individuals want to have a more active lifestyle by concentrating on many dynamic movements, it’s still important to consider static posture in your daily lives. Most experts would suggest emphasizing having a balance of the two.
Good vs. Bad Posture: Key Differences
Although many individuals already have a picture of what’s considered a “good” posture, it’s still vital that we discern what’s good from what’s considered “bad.”
Many practitioners would say that good posture is defined as your spine is correctly aligned through various scientific studies while allowing a multitude of different movements. Contrary to what most people think, your spine is divided into three curves: one on your neck, in the mid-back section, and the lower back section of your spine. These sections are reinforced so that they can support the weight and pressure of an individual.
Of course, it’s not just your spine that helps support your weight: muscles and ligaments also play a role in helping with your posture.
These muscles responsible for supporting much of your back’s skeletal system are called postural muscles and help mitigate the effects of gravity across your body. The goal of good posture is that both your spine and these muscles should work to have a better form.
Improving Your Posture
When it comes to improving your posture, there’s no “magic” treatment or trick to fix bad posture. If you want to ensure that you’re getting the most out of a good posture, you’ll need to put time, energy, and effort into it.
You must keep your spine’s natural curve in good alignment. Most individuals who have had bad posture for quite some time will lead to some of these three curves in the spine protruding, leading to postural scoliosis. The good news here is that the effects of postural scoliosis can be reversed. Fortunately, some physical therapists are well-versed with scoliosis’s impact on the body and specialize in exercises for curved spine scoliosis.
But other than professional treatment, you should always be conscious of your postural habits. Although it might take a while to get used to good posture, it will become second nature if you’re used to it.
Most experts would also suggest having a more active lifestyle and doing exercises that could improve your flexibility and posture. This can come in the form of yoga and Pilates.
Although we might not keep it in mind every day, good posture can have a lasting impact on our health. Good posture can contribute to your body’s health and can help reduce age-related health complications that might increase in coming decades, such as osteoarthritis and scoliosis caused by bad posture.
If you want to maximize the benefits of good posture, you might want to continue being aware of your posture. After all, mindfulness is critical in helping yourself. Change should start now. If you’re going to live a healthier future, you have to take steps in getting there. Although you might need to be mindful and aware of your posture, good posture will only become second nature once you get used to it.