Straighten up! Good posture equals a better back. Chiropractic Society of Rhode Island participates in National Posture Month
The Chiropractic Society of Rhode Island (CSRI) recently joined dozens of health-focused organizations around the world in celebrating National Posture Month. During the month-long celebration, participating CSRI members will provide education and awareness information to patients and the general public, as well as free posture assessments, as part of this initiative.
“Poor posture is the largest contributor to neck and back pain, which can greatly impact the quality of your life,” said Dr. David Dwyer, president of CSRI and a chiropractic physician at Toll Gate Chiropractic in Warwick and Wakefield, Rhode Island. “While posture is always on the radar of a chiropractor, we plan to make good posture—particularly in the workplace—even more of a point of emphasis this month.”
According to the PostureMonth.org website, the negative impacts of poor posture abound and can literally and figurative shorten your life. People who slump and slouch unknowingly can compress lungs and abdominal organs, leading to greater risk of heart disease, breathing, circulatory and digestion problems. This is in addition to the aforementioned neck and back issues.
Having good posture faces the additional challenge of the lifestyle of today’s office worker. According to the Journal of Behavior Addictions, the average desk worker is seated for nearly 13 hours per day. That places the emphasis on posture at the desk/computer as well as stretching and exercise for the hours when you are not.
Some strategies for better workplace ergonomics include: Sit strong by stacking your head over shoulders, and your shoulders over pelvis as this will improve blood flow, digestion, breathing capacity and muscle tone; set your monitor to eye level, arrange keyboard so your wrists and forearms are aligned and shoulders are relaxed; and adjust your chair so hips are above the knees. Be sure to take periodic breaks to stand up, at least once an hour if not more.
“If you have a desk job, the more you can stand, the better. If you have a company that’s willing, you might consider a standing desk. You would be stunned at how much better you will feel by reducing your sitting by just a few hours per day,” said Dr. Dwyer.
Posture Awareness Month was started by Dr. Steven Weiniger, a posture expert and author of Stand Taller, Live Longer: An Anti-Aging Strategy. For additional posture tips, including a 31-day challenge to improving your posture, visit Posturemonth.org.