Why Is Good Posture So Important?
Good Posture – Bad Posture
Discover How Your Posture May Be Affecting Your Health
Remember when your parents/teachers told you to “stand/sit up straight”, “pull your shoulders back”, “don’t slouch”, etc.? And no matter how hard you tried to straighten up, you simply could not maintain this position for long – it was uncomfortable, felt unnatural, and perhaps even caused you pain in your back, shoulders, or neck.
At the Pain & Posture Wellness Centre we see many patients with posture-related pains and aches. Posture is always related to the underlying structure, and we are excited about the changes we make to people’s bodies in terms of structural alignment. We love seeing their posture improve and their health and vitality increase, while their pain lessens. This is what our teams in Falkirk and Perth live for!
Why is posture so important?
Posture is important for a variety of reasons:
- People with good posture look taller and more confident.
- Good posture means fewer aches and pains, and better overall functioning of the body.
- Bad posture has a negative effect on overall health. Good posture can save/extend your life!
This last point is very important! There is a statistically relevant connection between bad posture and the risk of falling and injuring yourself, poorer overall physical functioning, poorer mobility, increased risk of spinal fractures, and even an increased risk of death!
Scientists looked at elderly people with hyperkyphosis (“humpbacks”). This means their upper or mid-back is rounded and their neck sticks out so that their ears sit in front of their shoulders. Here’s what the research found out about these people: [1,2,3,4,5,6,7]
- They are 1.38 times more likely to fall and injure themselves.
- They find it significantly harder to bend, walk and climb. They also have reduced grip strength and find it harder to rise from a chair.
- They have a greater risk of being admitted to hospital with breathing problems.
- They have a 1.44 greater rate of mortality.
- In elderly women with spinal fractures, the presence of hyperkyphosis (“humpback”) predicts an increased risk of death.
- Elderly women with hyperkyphosis (“humpback”) are less mobile. It takes them longer to perform mobility tests.
The more the head sits in front of the body (called “forward head carriage” by scientists), the heavier it becomes on the neck. For every inch that the ear is in front of the shoulder, the head adds an additional 10lbs of weight on the body, and it can add up to a total of 60lb.
Bad posture – I’m simply lazy
People may have told you that bad posture comes from being lazy, or not holding yourself up properly, or that it is simply a normal sign of ageing. The truth is that good posture has absolutely nothing to do with forcing yourself upright. If the bones in your body are in their correct position, your body can simply hold itself up. There’s almost no muscular effort involved. If the bones are out of place, you can try all you want and you won’t stay upright.
Bad posture is caused by bones in your body (usually in your spine) that have moved out of alignment in a specific way so that your body has no way to pull them back into their proper position by itself. So that’s where those forward-rolling shoulders, the rounded back, and the general slouching come from. In other words: it’s not your fault and you’re not lazy!
Our teams in Falkirk and Perth take care of the underlying cause of these problems. To do so, we use a cutting-edge treatment method called Advanced Biostructural Correction™ (ABC™). We gently push bones back into their proper position and thus work on those misalignments that your body can’t fix by itself. Your posture will improve over time. With improved posture comes improved function and improved quality of life! We take pictures before and after treatment so you can see the difference for yourself.
If you are experiencing pains and aches or are concerned about your posture, fill out the form below for a free consultation with one of our practitioners today!
 Kado et al. Hyperkyphotic posture predicts mortality in older community-dwelling men and women: a prospective study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15450042.
 Kado et al. Hyperkyphotic posture and risk of injurious falls in older persons: the Rancho Bernardo Study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17595423.
 Kado et al. Hyperkyphotic posture and poor physical functional ability in older community-dwelling men and women: the Rancho Bernardo study. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15972617
 Kado et al. Hyperkyphosis predicts mortality independent of vertebral osteoporosis in older women. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19451575.
 Katzman et al. Age-related hyperkyphosis, independent of spinal osteoporosis, is associated with impaired mobility in older community-dwelling women. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20480146.
 Lee et al. Clinical Features and Outcomes of Respiratory Complications in Patients with Thoracic Hyperkyphosis. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26307506
 Kapandji, Physiology of the Joints, Volume III.
 Stress on the cervical spine as related to posture. From: Hansraj, K. K. (2014). Assessment of stresses in the cervical spine caused by posture and position of the head. Surgical technology international, 25, 277-279. Image from https://peperperspective.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/weight-of-head.jpg