Poor Posture and How to Fix It

In the articles, “Identifying Poor Posture” and “Posture to Straighten Your Back,” John Schubbe details examples of poor posture and ways to correct it. The following are excerpts from Schubbe’s two articles:


Examples of Bad Posture and Back Support:

The following are examples of common behavior and poor ergonomics that need correction to attain good posture and back support:

· Slouching with the shoulders hunched forward

· Lordosis (also called "swayback"), which is too large of an inward curve in the lower back

· Carrying something heavy on one side of the body

· Cradling a phone receiver between the neck and shoulder

· Wearing high-heeled shoes or clothes that are too tight

· Keeping the head held too high or looking down too much

· Sleeping with a mattress or pillow that doesn't provide proper back support, or in a position that compromises posture


Sitting Posture for Office Chairs:

· Avoid slouching or leaning forward, especially when tired from sitting in the office chair for long periods

· When sitting on an office chair at a desk, arms should be flexed at a 75 to 90 degree angle at the elbows. If this is not the case, the office chair should be adjusted accordingly

· Knees should be even with the hips, or slightly higher when sitting in the office chair

· Keep both feet flat on the floor. If there's a problem with feet reaching the floor comfortably, a footrest can be used along with the office chair

· Sit in the office chair with shoulders straight

· Don't sit in one place for too long, even in ergonomic office chairs that have good back support. Get up and walk around and stretch as needed


Standing Posture:

· Stand with weight mostly on the balls of the feet, not with weight on the heels

· Keep feet slightly apart, about shoulder-width

· Let arms hang naturally down the sides of the body

· Avoid locking the knees

· Tuck the chin in a little to keep the head level

· Be sure the head is square on top of the spine, not pushed out forward

· Stand straight and tall, with shoulders upright

· If standing for a long period of time, shift weight from one foot to the other, or rock from heels to toes

· Stand against a wall with shoulders and bottom touching wall


Walking Posture

· Keep the head up and eyes looking straight ahead

· Avoid pushing the head forward

· Keep shoulders properly aligned with the rest of the body


Driving Posture

· Sit with the back firmly against the seat for proper back support

· The seat should be a proper distance from the pedals and steering wheel to avoid leaning forward or reaching

· The headrest should support the middle of the head to keep it upright. Tilt the headrest forward if possible to make sure that the head-to-headrest distance is not more than four inches.



References:

Schubbe, J. (2004, May 17). Identifying Incorrect Posture. Veritas Health. https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/ergonomics/identifying-incorrect-posture

Schubbe, J. (2004, May 17). Posture to Straighten Your Back. Veritas Health. https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/ergonomics/posture-straighten-your-back

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