Standing, sitting, bending over or sleeping are movements and positions that we carry out or maintain on a daily basis.
But did you know that there is a correct way to do it, while others can even harm us and cause pain? Find out here what everyday postures can cause discomfort and how you can correct them.
Maintaining good posture is essential to maintain balance and avoid discomfort and injury. Body posture can be:
- static: refers to how the body is maintained when you are not in motion, that is, while you sleep, stand or sit.
- Dynamic: refers to how you support your body in motion, while walking, running, crouching or performing all kinds of actions.
Changes in posture can occur from:
- Bad habits: such as sitting slouched or not standing properly.
- inflexible muscles: They decrease range of motion, affecting how far a joint can move.
- weak muscles: encourage the fall, leaning the body forward, causing imbalance and frequent pain.
Let’s see how to perform daily movements correctly to prevent injuries or pain:
when you are sitting
Whether to rest, eat or work, there is a correct way to sit and other incorrect. Keep these tips in mind:
- Head flexed forward: the chin is directed towards the chest.
- Elbows off the body and in the air
- Hunched back: if you see the person in profile, you can see that they form a C with the body (head, spine, and legs), since they do not support their entire back on the couch, chair, or backrest.
- Elevated shoulders: they overload the trapezius muscle (central and upper back area).
- Crossed legs.
- Both feet must be in contact with the ground.
- Support your elbows so that your traps relax.
- The head has to be straight, aligning the cervical and dorsal spine. It should not lean forward or backward.
- The knees and hips must be flexed, forming an angle of 90° with each other and between the hip and the trunk.
- Use a cushion on your back so that your vertebrae rest and you can maintain an upright posture more easily.
- If you are reading, the book, computer, or cell phone should be at eye level. This advice also applies to television.
when you stand
If you are cooking, ironing, or working standing in one position for a long period of time, keep these tips in mind:
Being stooped (this is an especially common problem among tall people, who need to get closer to the object they are handling).
It can also be harmful to wear uncomfortable shoes, such as heels, since they affect circulation, and in the long run they can have repercussions on the hip and spine.
- The weight should be placed towards the balls of the feet or distributed throughout the sole of the foot.
- It prevents the abdominal area from moving forward.
- The head must be upright.
- Keep your shoulders slightly back.
- Always wear comfortable shoes.
- Face up: if the lower back (lower central area of the back) bothers you, you can place a pillow under the knees and calves.
- face down: if the lower back bothers you, you can place a pillow under the abdomen to elevate it and prevent the lumbar lordosis (inward curvature of the lower back) from being attenuated. It is not advised to use a pillow on your head when sleeping on your stomach.
- Sideways: Place a cushion between your knees so that the upper leg does not put too much pressure on the lower one. Put another pillow for the shoulder, neck and head, it should not be too high or low, otherwise the cervical spine will not be aligned with the rest of the vertebrae.
- Extended knees.
- Hip flexed, bringing the trunk forward. This overloads the lumbar spine and as it straightens it continues to add load to the back, thus causing more pain.
- Flexed cervical spine that directs the chin towards the chest.
- Feet together.
- Bend your knees and hips emulating a squat.
- Keep your back straight.
- Do not flex your neck, the cervical spine must remain upright, while what goes down is the gaze towards the point or object in question.
- Spread your feet.
To solve height problems, chairs, stools, or drawers can be used to find the appropriate position.
When you sleep
There are countless positions when sleeping and it is very difficult for us to control them, but the following tips can help you prevent damage:
when you bend over
You may occasionally bend down to pick up something that fell or constantly to do some work or exercise.
The important thing is that you perform this action correctly, let’s see the most common errors and how to correct them:
Sources consulted: US National Library of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Harvard Medical School, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.