Desk Posture Tips

Do you sit all day? Did you know that sitting all day at work can be as deadly as smoking?? While most of you are probably physically fit, I’ve read that even a 1 hour session at the gym after work doesn’t negate the 8 hours of sitting…which seems obvious.

So what do you do about it? Try to get up and take a 5 minute walk every hour. Think about it…that will be 40 minutes of walking in your work day. That’s a good start.

But this post won’t be about how to sit less. I’m going to talk about how to sit BETTER while you’re at work. Because posture plays a huge role in fitness as well. Having bad posture can lead to injuries and affect how efficient you are while exercising.

I have horrible posture – I’ll admit it. Which is why I wanted to write about this. I wanted to do the research and see how I can help myself be better at this.

Have you heard of upper crossed syndrome? Here’s a quick picture:

upper-crossed-syndrome

 

Source

Upper crossed syndrome is a muscular imbalance in your upper body, usually from sitting at a desk for prolonged periods of time. I have noticed that I have “forward head syndrome” which scares me because my neck bones have now been molded that way it seems!

Here’s what to look for with upper crossed syndrome:

  • Forward head posture – Picture the little old lady crossing the street who can’t see where she’s going because her head is jutting forward of her shoulders so she can only look to the ground in front of her and not up or ahead.

  • Increased cervical lordosis and thoracic kyphosis – The hunchback. Think about how your shoulders must compensate in the overhead position if you have a even the beginnings of a hunchback.

  • Elevated and protracted shoulders – This is when your pecs are so tight and your sub-scapular muscles (the ones between and below your shoulder blades) are too weak to hold your shoulders back so they round forward instead.

  • Rotation or abduction and winging of the scapula – Abduction means the (scapula) bone is moving away from the body which gives it a ‘wing’ looking effect when looking at it from the side or rear views. If someone can slide their fingers under your shoulder blade and grab on to it, your scapulae are winging.

A weak upperbody leads to shoulder tightness and weakness. I’ve seen it in clients before…where doing overhead presses is so hard for them because of their shoulder tightness. 

So how do we avoid all of these postural imbalances?

POSTURE TIPS

I did some Google research and found a few tips to help us all with our posture while at computers. Here’s what I found:

And I found this great infographic from Women’s Health:

posture-tips

Everyday I have to remind myself to do these things, whether it’s at my computer or just driving home in my car. I’m such a sloucher. But I don’t want to have permanent forward head syndrome (or as my sister calls it, “turtle back”) when I’m older.

Do you have good posture? What tips would you add?

If you’re a dancer or gymnast I’m jealous because you all have awesome posture!

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Comments

  1. I have terrible posture. This is some great tips. I find when I sit at my computer too often I get really bad headaches from my posture. I try to get up and move around often.

  2. All great tips Patty!
    I also pay attention to standing postures when I’m looking for deviations in my clients. Most common is anterior pelvic tilt due to tight hip flexors and weak hamstrings/core. This often appears together with upper crossed syndrome.
    Tamara recently posted…Make your own meal plan | benefits of a boring dietMy Profile

    • oh definitely. I have anterior pelvic tilt as well. I always try to do exercises for it but I need to be better about it so that I can fix it! My lower back always kills me when I’m standing or walking for too long

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  1. […] for the majority of your day. This can wreak havoc on your posture and muscles. I wrote once about posture tips in the office, but today I want to talk about what you can do at the gym to help your […]

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