Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Posture 102: Harmful Workplace Habits

Does this picture below look familiar of anyone you know?  Chances are probably "yes".  Posture at work is not something that should be ignored.  Most people work a good 40hrs a week and habits from work can be harmful to your body in the future.
Exercises like Pilates are helpful in understanding proper posture outside of the gym or studio setting.  When talking "posture check" always start from the ground (or feet) and work your way up.  The best part about maintaining good posture is that your body will be less sore at the end of the day and you will burn more calories being in correct alignment.  

Seated at a Desk Checklist:
  1. Feet are flat on the floor, toes facing forward
  2. Knees bent at about a 90 degree angle, but still able to see your toes
  3. Sitting evenly on your sit bones (hips); that means no leaning from side to side
  4. Pull your belly toward your back (scoop)
  5. Reach your shoulders down toward your back hip pockets
  6. Feel as if someone is pulling your hair up to the ceiling to lengthen through your neck, gaze straight ahead
Slouching will put extra pressure on your spine, round your shoulders forward, and tighten your hips.  Make sure that at least every hour you get up to stretch or walk around.  The less you are sedentary the better  you will feel.  This will allow blood to circulate and bring fresh oxygen to the brain so you stay sharp throughout the day.  

If you are frequently at the computer during your day take time every hour to close you eyes and do some deep breathing.  This will relax your muscles and avoid strain on your eyes.  Your fingers might also tend to cramp up so give them a small workout too (pretend play the piano, open/close to a fist, circle the wrists).  This will loosen up your joints so you are able to type up those important reports more efficiently.

Note to females: Be careful of high heels!  They can cause tight calves/hamstrings, low back pain, and sore feet.  Opt for flats or wedges so you have more stability if you have to be on your feet often.  

Workplace injuries are common, but taking simple steps can help to prevent them from happening.  Remember, a small change you make today will have a large effect on your future health!

No comments:

Post a Comment