How Do I Sit Properly?
- Keep your feet on the floor or on a footrest or stool/books, if they don't reach the floor. Both feet should be flat on the floor, do not cross your ankles and place the balls of your feet on the floor- this may lead to ankle and knee instability.
- Don't cross your legs. Your ankles should be in line with your knees. Ankles at a 90-degree angle and knees at a 90-degree angle.
- Knees in line with hips. Your knees should be at the level of your hips. Your thighs should be parallel with the ground.
- Get your butt in the chair. Adjust the backrest of your chair to support your low- and mid-back or use a back support. Make sure the back support doesn’t push you forward; this will create a strain on the upper back. The support should only support the lumbar lordosis or commonly known as the small of your back with having the upper back come to meet the back of the chair.
- Another 90-degree- Elbows, keep elbows at 90-degrees. Relax your shoulders and keep your forearms parallel to the ground.
- Computer set up- Computer screen should be at your eye level and directly in front of you. You should be able to reach out a touch the screen without bending forward. Elbows should be flush with your torso when reaching for mouse and keyboard.
- Get up! Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time.
How Do I Stand Properly?
- Bear your weight primarily on the balls of your feet.
- Keep your knees soft- that means not hyperextended but very gently bent.
- Keep your feet about shoulder-width apart.
- Stand straight and tall with your shoulders pulled back and down. Picture that there is a string pulling up from the crown of your skull.
- Keep your head level-your ears should be in line with your shoulders. Do not push your head forward, backward, or to the side.
- If you start to have back pain while standing too long find something to place one foot on like the bottom of a shopping cart or open the cabinet when washing dishes to rest your foot there. This creates a posterior pelvic tilt which will alleviate pressure on the lumbar spine.
What Is The Proper Lying Position?
- Find the mattress that is right for you. While a firm mattress is generally recommended, some people find that softer mattresses reduce their back pain. Your comfort is important. I recommended going to a Sleepys where they have a large selection and having the sales person start you on the firmest mattress, lying on it for 15-20 minutes in your most likely sleeping position then working down to their softer mattress.
- Sleeping on your side or back is more often helpful for back pain. Place a pillow between your knees while lying on your side or under your knees lying on your back.
Can I Correct My Poor Posture?
YES! Remember, however, that long-standing postural problems will typically take longer to address than short-lived ones, as often the joints have adapted to your long-standing poor posture. Conscious awareness of your own posture and knowing what posture is correct will help you consciously correct yourself. With much practice, the correct posture for standing, sitting, and lying down will gradually replace your old posture. This, in turn, will help you move toward a better and healthier body position.
How's your posture? Are you experiencing pain due to poor posture? Let us know in the comments below.