The Truth About Fixing Your Posture!

“QUIT SLOUCHING! SIT UP STRAIGHT!” We have all heard these from some family member at some point in our life, and maybe even a health professional we have worked with at one point. While having a more upright posture does make you taller, posture gets a bad rap for a lot of things – back pain, neck pain and even shoulder pain at times. FIXING posture is not the solution to your problem, though it may be a factor! Follow along while we debunk the myth of FIXING your posture to solve all of your aches and pains.

 

“My doctor said I have kyphosis and scoliosis! I’m done for!”

We have heard it a lot, the dreaded kyphosis, lordosis, scoliosis, flat back syndromes. Accompanying these is the classic anterior pelvic tilt! These words all describe a person’s expected postural alignment. Kyphosis is the natural curve( “slightly backwards C”) along your thoracic spine or mid back, lordosis is the, “slightly C-shaped” curve your lumbar spine and cervical spine or low back and neck make, and the anterior pelvic tilt is the result of this pattern. These shapes are formed as we develop and age. Now all of these CAN BE excessive, but that does not mean they are causing pain or will cause pain. These could be normal for YOU, the individual. The degree at these curves can be different person to person and change as we age due to gravity and other factors. Your spine is supposed to have curves in order to distribute and accept forces that we put it through everyday.

“Everything in moderation.”

Excessive exists and too little curvatures exist, but as stated earlier these are not necessarily the main problem or the cause of your problem. More often than not it has to do with some form of muscular strength/endurance in whatever posture you are trying to maintain for an extended period of time. Example would you really expect to be able to sit for 4 hours on a bar stool without moving? Our body has tons of sensors in order to tell us when we should move or need to move. We can train the sensors and the muscles surrounding them to allow them to tolerate more load throughout the day, but most of the time there will be a limit. No one posture is the best; we can find and work with postures that make us more biomechanically efficient for the task at hand. But, research even shows that lifting with a flexed spine allows you to lift heavier at times, so there is some balancing act naturally occurring between efficiency and strength. Research also shows that there is no correlation between posture and pain time and time again BOTTOM LINE – there’s more to it, “fixing your posture” cannot be the ONLY answer to solving pain… Or else we would all be pain free.

Does Posture Even Matter?

While excessive amounts of posture of increased curvature in the spine can be pathological, those have diagnostic testing and images completed to confirm those diagnosis. Too much time in one position may be aggravating for your condition, but that position is more than likely not the only time you feel your pain or problem. The point of this article is not to say “ignore posture, don’t fix it” or “posture doesn’t matter”, but to give you a better understanding that pain is much more complex and there are layers to unravel within each injury. So don’t sweat it if you can’t sit perfectly 100% of the time, no one can. The best posture is a changing one or one that does make the pain worse.

Looking To Put An End To Pain?

If you are struggling with pain anywhere along your spine or have been told it’s because of your bad posture – give us a call or fill out a contact form to speak with one of our doctors. We help people sit/stand/relax how they want with thorough assessments and interventions that provide a lifetime of relief. 

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