The importance of having good posture is often overlooked. You might remember a parent telling you to sit up straight, but didn’t think much of it at the time. It’s important to recognize the role posture plays in your overall health as it can have a significant impact.
Since most of us spend the majority of our waking hours working, it’s incredibly important to make sure our posture is at its very best while doing so. Continue reading to learn how to improve your posture at work.
Top Benefits of Improved Posture
Your posture can impact everything from the way you feel to how productive you are at work, and going through the day with bad posture can slow you down due. Poor posture can result in deflated self-esteem, back pain, and even injury. The following are a few benefits associated with keeping a good posture.
Improved Self-Esteem and Confidence
Having good posture can actually leave you feeling more confident in yourself and your ability to make decisions. This can not only help you be more successful in the workplace but can also benefit your overall mental health as well.
Decreased Headaches and Risk of Injury
Slouching places tension on your upper body and can cause headaches as well as other injuries. Back pain is one of the most common injuries associated with having bad posture. Back pain may not seem like a severe injury at first glance, but it’s actually why most people need to take days off from work later on.
Increased Productivity and Energy
Poor posture can leave you feeling tired and achy. As a result, your productivity and energy levels can decrease over time. Good posture makes it easier to breathe and can help you get through the day pain-free and focused on what you need to do. Is this reason enough to improve your posture at work?
How to Sit Correctly
Hovering over a keyboard all day puts a lot of strain on your upper body, and since sitting requires very little movement, you increase your risk of health issues. An example of an injury that people suffer from after sitting with bad posture is carpal tunnel. Carpal tunnel syndrome leaves your hand feeling tingly and uncomfortable, making it hard for you to type on a computer. If you are tired of sitting, consider getting a standing desk to give yourself a little break throughout the day.
When sitting, make sure the height of your desk is just a little under the elbows. This lines up the desk with your body, reducing the need for you to hunch over your keyboard. Also make sure not to slouch into your chair, which can be easy to do when feeling tired. To avoid this, keep your head high with your shoulders and back flat against the chair.
How to Stand Correctly
If you spend a majority of your workday standing, you may be experiencing pain in your back and feet. This typically happens when you’ve been standing for extended periods of time.
Make sure to wear proper footwear when working on your feet. Also, make sure to keep your shoulders back and your abs pulled in. Some people find that having their hands planted on their sides helps them facilitate good posture as well.
How to Drive Correctly
Whether you drive to get to work or drive while you work, keeping up a good posture when doing so is very important.
Begin by making sure your seat is positioned uniquely to your body. Angle it back a little, but avoid overdoing it. Adjust the distance between you and the steering wheel to make sure your feet reach the pedals in a comfortable manner. Also, remember that the headrest and back support are there for a reason. You want your head to hit the headrest and your tailbone to hit the back of the seat.
How to Lift Correctly
Some jobs require heavy lifting which can be dangerous if not executed properly. Each year, many people injure their backs because of lifting something incorrectly.
To prevent strain on your back, hold a wide stance, and place your feet firmly on the ground when lifting. Make sure your back is kept straight when you bend your knees to pick up an item. If possible, also make a conscious effort to keep your abdominal area tight.
The pain associated with bad posture can take a toll on your body both mentally and physically. For this reason, it’s important to make an effort to improve your posture. The last thing you want is to feel limited from reaching your maximum potential at work.
If you’re worried about previous damage from bad posture or need further assistance, consult a doctor or physical therapist to see what the best next move would be for you. Discover additional tips to improve your posture in the visual below by the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.
Julia Morrissey is a content creator who writes on topics ranging from business to lifestyle. When she’s not working you can find her running with her rescue dog or eating vegan cookies.