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How to Fix Posture with the Help of Ergonomic Tools and Equipment
As we age, bad habits like slouching while sitting down and sleeping in an uncomfortable position can put a strain on our spine, resulting in poor posture. Over time, it can lead to weaker muscles, joint stiffness, and excruciating back pain. When left unaddressed, postural imbalance can pull our spine out of alignment, impacting our circulation and gait.
The good thing is, posture and spinal problems can be prevented and health improved simply with the use of ergonomic props. Here is a compiled list of posture-friendly tools and equipment that can help you beat postural dysfunction.
Tips on how to fix posture naturally:
Switch to an Ergonomic Chair
The average Canadian spends most of their day in a chair. When they work, do homework, ride a bus, or have a meal, they are usually sitting. Sitting for extended periods can lead to a range of adverse health effects, including poor posture. This is because being in a chair for so long places a great deal of stress and tension on the spine.
If you spend most of your day sitting, switching to an ergonomic chair can greatly reduce the strain placed on your body, thus improving your posture. Tradition chairs are designed with the sole purpose of sitting in mind. An ergonomic chair is different - it can be fully adjusted so that it aligns with your height and your desk. It lets you sit in a position that is not only comfortable for you but also aligns naturally with your body.
Here’s what to look for in a good ergonomic chair:
#1 Adjustable Seat Height
A reliable ergonomic chair allows you to adjust the seat height such that your feet stay flat on the floor and your arms stay even with the height of your desk. For most people, the recommended seat height is from 16 to 21 inches off the floor.
#2 Lumbar Support
People tend to slouch when they are seated for a long time. This happens because there is nothing to support the inward curve of their spine. To prevent this bad habit, your ergonomic chair should have an adjustable backrest. The result is that your back and spine are properly cushioned and supported at various angles. The recommended size for a lumbar support is 12 to 19 inches wide.
Convert Your Workstation Into a Standing Desk
When we are writing on a desk or typing on our computer, sometimes we unintentionally hunch our backs. When the slouching becomes frequent, that negatively affects our posture. Upgrading to a standing desk is a great option because it forces you to work in a proper upright position. Also called a stand-up desk, it is a table that can be adjusted in height so that you can choose between sitting and standing any time while doing your tasks. By placing your computer screen at eye level, it lets you maintain a nice position parallel to the floor.
Here are some types of standing desks:
#1 Sit-Stand Desks with Electric Motors
This type of standing desk uses electric motors for raising and lowering your desktop. Refrain from selecting low-quality height-adjustable desks as they tend to be noisy and wobbly. High-quality stand-up desks, on the other hand, have a smooth and quiet operation.
#2 Standing Desk Converters
If you want to retain your existing desk, there is a way for you to modify it into a standing desk. A standing desk converter is designed to sit on top of any regular desk. It has a system of levers and springs that lets you adjust your computer to your desired height
Buy a Footrest
When a chair is too high for a person, it can make it difficult for the person sitting to keep their feet on the floor. As a result, the person sits with their legs crossed. According to studies, sitting this way for prolonged periods can cause posture issues, particularly a forward head posture. An easy way to fix this is with the use of a footrest.
Here are some types of footrests:
#1 Foot Flexors
A foot flexor is a raised level platform that flexes forward and backward in short, subtle movements. This allows for reduced stress on the nerves and blood vessels.
#2 Foot Bars
If you are using a height-adjustable desk, a foot bar is a great choice for improving overall posture. Its curved design reduces pressure on the lower back, allowing you to stand in a neutral position with ease.
Use Lumbar Support
Poor postural habits tend to develop when you’re always sitting down. This is because when the muscles get tired, they weaken, causing you to slouch. What a lumbar support does is fill the gap between your lower back and chair, supporting the natural inward curve of your spine.
Here are some types of lumbar support:
#1 Lumbar Support Pillow
Most lumbar support pillows come in a D-shape to fit easily to the back of most chairs. Usually crafted from memory foam, these cushions are designed to provide support for the muscles and soft tissues in your back as well as keep your spine in proper alignment.
Rolled-up towels are a good alternative to lumbar support pillows, as they provide the same cushioning effect and support. Simply fold your towel lengthwise twice, then roll it. To keep it rolled up, place two rubber bands around it. Finally, place the towel behind your back.
Wear a Posture Corrector
While many people already know how to fix posture, they sometimes forget to practice it when they’re busy doing something else. Luckily, there are posture correctors that can help remind them how proper positioning should be. Before choosing a posture corrector, make sure it is fully adjustable to your weight and body type.
Here are some types of posture correctors:
#1 Cross-Back Elastic Braces
With a crisscross design, this type of posture corrector provides support and compression to the spine. It contours to your natural shape, providing comfort and relieving lower back pain.
#2 Moulded Upper Back Brace
Made of metal or hard plastic, a moulded upper back brace is designed for more serious cases of poor posture. They can be used by individuals recovering from an injury or suffering from scoliosis.
Many people understand the importance of maintaining proper posture, but sometimes, they tend to forget to keep a neutral spine. By making a couple simple modifications with the use of ergonomic tools and equipment, you can achieve good posture with minimal effort.