Why should you care about your posture? Does life really change the day you decide to stand up straight?
What if I told you it actually does?
But, we first need to understand the harm we must prevent to reinforce the benefits that good posture provide. This way we will understand the full scope of the importance posture plays.
And considering that many of us around the world have spent increased time staring at a computer screen for one reason or another over the past year, often times in less-than-ergonomic conditions, it could greatly improve your quality of life starting now.
Improve Your Posture, Improve Your Life
6 Harmful Effects of Bad Posture on the Body and Mind
Some of the most common negative side effects of poor posture include:
- curvature of the spine
- back and neck pain
- low quality sleep
- poor digestion
- lack of motivation
Some people like me have naturally shorter attention spans due to a variety of biological and environmental factors manifesting with depression symptoms, manic periods of hyper focus followed by periods of disinterest or apathy, and general inability to relax and sit still.
In other words, we don’t need any help with decreasing our ability to concentrate and focus or feeling depressed- we have to deal with that already. Bad posture can further aggravate this.
This is particularly important for people in college, as leaving home for the first time and being self-reliant can be a daunting task, and particularly taxing on people with mental health issues.
And for all medical students out there, not only will they endure many years of potentially posture-harming studying, learning, and working at university if they are not careful, but then they have an 80% chance of succumbing to a physical injury on the job later due to having to hold awkward positions as surgeons.
Easy Ways How You Can Improve Your Posture
One of the best ways is to make a mental effort to sit up straight in your chair and put your computer screen closer to eye level. Don’t slump forward and rest on your forearms. Rather, sit upright and keep the top of your head flat.
Aside from taking frequent breaks while working to get up, move around and stretch out, it can also help your energy levels and spine to alternate between periods of seated and standing desk use. Some ergonomic desks can be used in a sit-down position and then raised up to stand and work.
Alternately, people can stack an adjustable laptop stand or desk on top of a table to get the same effect.
Other facts about the link between posture and productivity
- Back pain costs U.S. employers $7 billion per year in lost work days and productivity, and existing problems contribute to 70 percent of those costs. Self-employed people will be picking up the tab on this one themselves. Ouch!!
- Increased fatigue and lowered energy levels increase cortisol which is your body’s stress hormone.
- Most people spend about half of their time thinking about something other than what they are doing.