Do You Have Faulty Posture?
Posted on 27th February 2023 at 13:50
Have you ever wondered why you keep getting that recurring back or shoulder pain? Have you ever looked in the mirror and felt that your posture just didn’t look right?
You’re not alone. 90% of people have what is known as a sway back posture. This is one of the faulty postures that’s common with our modern lifestyles and contributes to back pain.
Before we look at what sway back is, we need to understand what an ‘ideal’ posture looks like.
What is ideal posture?
Ideal posture is about your body alignment, or how your structural parts such as your head, torso, hips, knees, etc. relate to each other. You’re close to ideal posture when your head, shoulders, spine, hips, knees, and ankles all line up well with one another.
The most common way to test this is by observation or using a plumb line. (A plumb line is a piece of string which is suspended from a ceiling and has a small weight attached at the bottom to ensure it’s vertical.) Stand next to the vertical line so your joint alignment can be compared against it by someone else.
Whether you're standing, sitting, lying down, or moving, your body parts need to be balanced for ideal posture. This balance reduces the load on the muscles to maintain an upright posture. Some muscles are always active in this balanced state such as the Soleus, Hip Flexors, Gluteus Medius, and Erector Spinae.
Due to our modern lifestyles, sitting at desks all day, sitting in cars, and generally not moving enough, more of us experience a faulty or poor posture at one time or another.
Some examples of faulty posture can be as follows:
Sway back posture
Flat back posture
Round back (increased kyphosis) with forward head.
Sway back posture is one of the most common postural issues leading to low back pain. Also known as the ‘lazy posture’, it’s identified by seeing shoulders and chest leaning backwards, with hips turned in and the pelvis and chin thrust forward.
Why do people get sway back?
Sway back posture is often down to a lack of support at the hips and pelvic area, which puts a lot of pressure on the lower back. Weak abdominal muscles add to the problem.
Who does it affect?
You are more likely to get this posture if you have weak glutes, quads, or lower abdominals. If you sit a lot for work or are generally sedentary you may be susceptible to weakened muscles.
Don’ts to prevent sway back posture
Stand hanging off your hips and spine. Stand up tall using your muscles.
Swim breaststroke, or practise yoga poses like superman, cobra, or downward dog
Use back support accessories with an arched shape.
Do’s to prevent sway back posture
Sit deep in your chair, with your back straight and your chin facing ahead.
Train your glutes and quad muscles with the correct exercises, such as half squats.
Strengthen your lower abdominal muscles with leg lifts and reverse crunches.
Firstly we need to help loosen off those tight muscles caused by the sway-back posture and then corrective exercises are needed to strengthen the weaker muscles to bring back proper alignment. This takes the pressure off the wrong places and relieves pain.
Do you feel like your posture isn’t as it should be? We’ve got a great team of sports therapists who can help you get back on track. Book online today and make the decision to invest in yourself today!
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