Unless you’re a professional dancer, a chiropractor, or are working in a virtual workspace, there is a good chance that you have terrible posture when you’re sitting at your desk. Being hunched over a desk, typing away until the sound of your fingers on the keyboard drives you scatty, is not doing your back any favours (or you’re front). But this article is more about fixing your posture – instead of addressing those lockdown pounds. Poor posture isn’t something anyone actively seeks out; it is honestly just a combination of bad habits at home, in the car, and at work. Here are seven different ways to improve your posture at the office.
1. Embrace Neutral Posture
Neutral posture could otherwise be called natural posture, except that sitting at our desks all day isn’t exactly ‘natural’. The best way to take care of your back and neck at work is by adopting the neutral posture concept. That means the way your spine naturally aligns, without the slouching or hunching, is the most effective way to prevent pinched nerves and muscle tension.
Stretching is excellent for reducing fatigue, particularly that afternoon slump that we all know and dislike. Stretching wakes up your muscles and gets them ready for being used. You may think that stretching is only helpful when you’re about to exercise, but that isn’t true – it helps in many circumstances. Stretching warms up your muscles and works them gently – that way you can prevent injury and damage during the day.
3. Take Breaks
Taking breaks is not only good for your back but also for your mind too. Take a two-minute break every ninety minutes to help your body and mind be more productive and develop a healthier mindset. Take a walk around the office, stretch, and regroup. Breaks help you revaluate your goals, and they can boost your focus significantly – as long as they are not wasted.
4. Invest In An Ergonomic Chair
Ergonomic chairs can undeniably help ease lower back pain by giving the necessary support to the spine. Using them will reduce your risk of developing musculoskeletal disorders and problems that typically damage the back and neck. They are impressively comfortable and trendy-looking, and what is trendier than a healthy work environment? Get yourself the best ergonomic office chair and save yourself years of back pain and health issues.
5. Learn To Recognise Warning Signs
To prevent massive back problems down the line, you have to learn to recognize the warning signs before it is too late. If you’ve noticed that you’re getting stiff and sore at the end of each day, you need to monitor your symptoms and make daily notes. These notes will help to correlate your pain with certain activities – once you know what you’re doing wrong, you can act to remedy it.
6. Keep Your Body Aligned
Should you spend a lot of time sitting at your desk, or standing at a counter all day then you need to pay special attention to this one. Sitting and standing for long periods can cause health issues but, luckily, there are a few things you can do to alleviate some of the damage before it is too late. Keeping your body properly aligned improves blood flow, helps keep your blood vessels healthy, and supports your muscles and joints. Learn how to align your head, shoulders, spine, hips, knees, and ankles, and make sure that they consistently line up with each other.
7. Be Aware Of Your Elbows
No, don’t try and lick them. Just be aware of where they are as you’re working – that is at least possible, whereas licking your elbow is not. The ideal position for your elbows is to maintain them at a ninety-degree angle as you are working. If yours are not, you need to adjust your chair or get a new desk. Consistently having your elbows too high or too low will put unnecessary strain on your hips, spine, and wrists. That kind of low-level, but persistent, damage over time will lead to health issues that you need to do your best to avoid.
Hard-working, focused people are often the worst hit by poor posture and long working hours. Some things are necessary, and you should never get forced into changing your career goals just because you haven’t got the proper chair for the job. Invest in an ergonomic chair today, and kiss goodbye to mild back and neck pain forever.
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