Preventative care for your back and spine isn’t necessarily something you think about on a daily basis. However, it should be! Back pain is a chronic issue that plagues millions of people for a variety of reasons. And if you suffer from back pain, you know how limiting it can be. Taking preventative steps to improve your posture, can be a great way to decrease your back pain.
One of the easiest ways to decrease back pain is focusing on posture. This may seem like a small step but it can have big implications if done properly and regularly. Having poor posture actually makes your muscles and ligaments work harder, creating pain and stress in your back. Over time, poor posture can even lead to changes in your spine, resulting in even more pain and physical limitations. Therefore, improving your posture can take some of the strain off of these areas.
Tips for Improving Posture
- Straighten out: Standing straight and tall might seem simplistic but it requires constant focus on a variety of body parts. Tuck your stomach in and stand with your knees straight and shoulders back. The actions aren’t complicated but being self-aware and remembering to focus on standing straight can take a while to become habitual.
- Proper foot wear: Starting with the feet will give your entire body the support it needs to maintain good posture throughout the day. Supportive footwear will provide the rest of the body with a solid foundation to take strain off knees, hips and your spine.
- Focus on strengthening your core: While having strong muscles in your back is important for good posture, it is equally important to have a strong core. Your abdominal and pelvic muscles are key to decreasing stress and strain on your back.
- Vitamin D: Healthy diet is important for many reasons but including a sufficient amount of vitamin D is key for bone and muscle health. Talk to your doctor about getting enough vitamin D in your diet and/or a supplement.
- Sit straight and tall: Whether you sit at a desk for work or spend any time driving in a car throughout the day, you most likely spend a fair amount of time sitting. Making a conscious effort not to slouch will help improve your posture. Focus on keeping your shoulders back and head up.
- Reminders: For some people, maintaining good posture comes easily and automatically. For the rest of us, posture isn’t at the forefront of our busy lives. Doing something as simple as keeping little notes posted in places like at your desk, in your car or on your bathroom mirror can be good reminders. Some people could benefit from a set alarm on their phone that can be a regular reminder to do a series of posture checks during the day.
Don’t wait until back pain is a chronic debilitating issue to think about solutions. Prevention is the best way to decrease your chances of living a life with back pain. Start today with a commitment to focusing on better posture. Your entire body will thank you!