Training and being fit isn’t only about being in peak physical condition. There are a lot of benefits to the two for general day-to-day stamina and wellbeing but most people are leading a sedentary, lifestyle.
Lifestyle and Posture
Daily movement during labouring shifts and physical jobs aren’t as common the way they once were, meaning it’s easy to fall into habits of bad posture as we slip into depending on modern conveniences. The nature of our lifestyles today can lead to problematic health concerns, as we juggle busy lives and demanding jobs without taking the proper precautions or time to check in with our bodies.
About 60% of the UK’s essential workers are women, with more than a quarter of people worldwide not getting enough exercise each week according to the World Health Organisation. So it’s no surprise that 41% of people injured themselves whilst training in the gym. Poor posture and incorrect form have a lot to answer for, so here are a couple of telltale signs that indicate bad posture from the NHS. It might help prevent an accident and be a great starting point for you to know if you need to work on correcting it and preventing permanent damage. Keep reading to find out what those telltale signs are and more importantly, how you can work on fixing them with some simple exercises.
Spot the signs:
- Slouching in a chair
- Sticking your bum out
- Standing with a flat back
- Dependency/ leaning on one leg
- A hunched back or ‘text neck’ position
- A poking chin
- Rounded shoulders
- Shoulder hold – used to go “handsfree” with the phone
See the full range of inflicting damage and guidance recommended by the NHS, here.
What to do next
One or all of these positions can be an indicator of poor posture and over time put your joints and muscles under massive pressure. When people get injuries in the gym a lot of people would be quick to jump to the conclusion that they’ve trained too hard, or lifted weights that were too heavy. However, if you’ve been working with supervision in the gym and are careful and confident about the weight of what you lift, it’s also a good idea to consider what your posture might have to answer for as well.
Something many people struggle with, slouching is a habit many of us fall into for myriad reasons; poor seating at home or at work, a sign of lacking confidence, or the weight compensation for larger breasts. Over time we can see slouching causes back pain and muscle tension.
Squats, Planks and Back Extensions are all good exercises along with consciously correcting your posture to keep it strong and safe from injury.
Dependency/ leaning on one leg
This comfort move is actually causing massive pressure on one side of your lower back and hip. Over time you’ll probably start to feel distribution weighted unevenly to one side- as the muscles around your pelvis imbalance.
Other causes of this dependency are also carrying a rucksack independently on one side of the body and carrying a toddler!
Bridges, Side-Lying Leg lifts and Planks are again useful here to keep your core strength up from top to bottom.
Hunched back from texting and typing
Hands up if you’re guilty? In a digital age where everything is mobile and we’re always in such a rush everyone is fixed to media and tools that move with us. But the problem with this is that without a fixed desk point, it can be hard to maintain the perfect position for work, ensuring that the height of our laptops, phones and other devices are in line with our vision. Add to that the lack of chairs that are actually supportive for our back and neck; let alone leaving ample room for our legs to be at the right angle. The repetitive nature of this one means it can wreak havoc with our natural alignment and take lots of work to correct.
Seated rows, Pull-ups and Chest Stretches are perfect here.