The importance of having correct posture is often overlooked despite the many benefits of good posture and clear drawbacks of poor posture. Posture plays a critical role in your overall health and wellbeing, so it’s crucial to actively work on improving posture.
Many people spend a large part of their week at work, so this is a good place to focus on your posture. Whether your job requires you to be sitting at a desk all day, standing, driving, or lifting heavy items, it’s incredibly important to ensure your posture is correct. In this post, we highlight the benefits of improving your posture and outline how to improve your posture at work.
Main Benefits of Improved Posture
Your posture can impact your physical and mental health. Correcting your posture may provide the following benefits.
Less Headaches and Reduced Risk of Injury
Poor posture puts tension on your upper body, which can lead to headaches and other injuries, such as to the back. The most common injuries due to poor posture are to the back. Back pain is also one of the leading causes for people to have to miss work or see a doctor. By improving your posture you can potentially reduce your risk of headaches and other injuries.
Boosted Self-Esteem and Confidence
By sitting up straight, you can actually improve the way you feel about yourself and your ability to make decisions. Studies have shown that improved posture can lead to increased confidence, mood, and self-esteem.
Increased Productivity and Energy
Since incorrect posture can lead to headaches, pain, and decrease confidence, as you might expect it can also impact your energy levels and ability to be productive. Feeling energized, confident, and pain free can help you stay focused on what you need to do at work.
How to Improve Posture
Below we discuss correct posture and offer diagrams to help you learn how to sit, stand, drive, and lift correctly.
How to Sit Correctly
When sitting at a desk, keep your shoulders back and back flat against the chair. You’ll want to look straight ahead at your screen, which should be at eye level. Your keyboard should be straight in front of you and easy to reach. Keep your feet positioned firmly on the floor and adjust the height of your chair so that your knees are at the same height as your hips.
How to Stand Correctly
When you’re on your feet, keep your head level and shoulders back. Try not to allow your head or shoulders to tip forward. Keep your hands relaxed and by your sides. Always avoid locking your knees when standing still. You’ll also want to wear comfortable, supportive footwear – avoid shoes with high heels!
How to Drive Correctly
Correct driving position means having your seat angled slightly back and your tailbone against the seat back. If you’d like you can add lumbar support, such as a towel, to provide additional support for your lower back. Make sure that you can reach the pedals comfortably; do not have your seat too far back. Also, utilize the headrest. It’s actually there for a reason!
How to Lift Correctly
Lifting incorrectly can be very dangerous. In fact, lifting heavy items is one of the leading causes of injury in the workplace. When lifting, have your feet in a wide stance and ensure your footing. Keep your abdominals tight and back straight. Bend at your knees and hips and then lift using your legs.
With many more people working from home in makeshift offices, it can be difficult to find the proper ergonomic settings for your workspace. When you consider the effects of poor posture on your body in the long term, it’s worth it to find ways to improve your posture, even in your home office.
For more tips and advice on how to improve posture, check out the visual below.
Julia is a content creator who writes on topics ranging from business to lifestyle. She lives in New York City where you can find her running in Central Park, walking her dog, or eating vegan cookies. Check her out on LinkedIn.