The things we learn from Physical Therapy are not meant to remain in the clinic. It is especially important to remember, with the current situation we’re all facing today — staying indoors for our safety and that of others, working from home — that our pains will not disappear because of our inability to leave the house. In this time, it is upon ourselves to recall the lessons we’ve learned in managing our health and caring for our bodies. And as we’re staying home, potentially sitting at a desk all day, there is one particular thing that we all should mind for that exact care of our health — Our posture.
Do you hunch your shoulders forward at your desk? Slouch to type on your keyboard? Lean forward to answer calls or answer emails?
Every movement of your body is affected by your posture, whether you’re sitting, standing, walking, running, jumping, or performing any other physical task. It is also possible to have different postures for different physical acts.
When your body slouches or folds in ways that it’s not supposed to, pain can develop, no matter what it is you’re doing — And pain is the last thing you may need right now. It’s important that you cover all of your bases while you remain at home by considering your posture.
How does poor posture develop?
If you have back pain that’s caused by poor posture, there is no reason to be embarrassed. In fact, there are very few (if any) people who actually practice perfect posture in everything they do. But it’s normal. We become so wrapped up in whatever tasks we are doing that we forget to think about the way our bodies are positioned. While we sit in our home desk chairs for so long, we get tired from holding ourselves up all day long and begin to compensate. But this kind of positioning isn’t normal for your body, and it can lead to pain or even functional issues with time.
Poor posture isn’t due to laziness or apathy; rather, it generally has something to do with a physical weakness within our bodies. When we are lacking in the posture department, it is generally because our bodies literally get tired of holding us up.
Even if you exercise regularly and continue to do so in your home, it is possible that there are still a few weak muscles contributing to your posture that you may not even realize. The muscles in your shoulders, back, abdomen, buttocks, and pelvic floor all play an important role in your posture. If even one of those muscles is weak, your core will be affected, and your posture may be affected.
Regaining proper posture at home:
If your posture is causing you pain, the techniques used in physical therapy can help, even while you’re stuck indoors. There are resources available to you now online, perhaps even through scheduled online sessions with your physical therapist, that can help you manage your posture. Practice stretching, lying down properly, and complete exercises that will improve your posture over time. If you can, stand at a desk instead of sit, and don’t forget to walk around a little.
It’s in these posture management practices that you can discover relief in, or completely dodge, back pain and increase your strength.
Don’t let your habits create pain in this delicate time. Take care of yourself, and don’t hesitate to ask for help if you need it. We’re all in this together. As well, for Eastside Sports Rehabilitation Clinic and others remaining open until further notice, feel free to contact with any questions or concerns about your posture or your pain.
You can reach our clinic at (425) 576-8180 or at the “contact” link above.