I recently posted an article about how posture affects our psyche. It concluded that a strong posture helps align us with our goals in life. But of course in addition to a purposeful spirit, we also have bodies that are affected by posture. So, let’s get physical here…
Poor posture can lead to pain, injury and fatigue.
Pain is a funny thing. Most of us don’t like it, yet we need it to warn us when something just isn’t right.
It would be nice if pain wasn’t so visceral at times. Just a little voice in our head would suffice — like the feminine seductive warning we hear in old Bond movies, before the evil lair explodes…
[sultry voice:] “Your body will self-destruct in two minutes.” … or twenty years.
That would be a nice way of telling us we need to make some changes. But that’s not how our bodies warn us. Apparently a part of us thinks that pain will do a better job getting our attention. An example is chronic low back pain.
A habitually poor posture adds unnatural stress to our spine. The effect of this stress is a slow process that involves inflammation, blood stagnation, degeneration, and a buildup of scar tissue in the area. Pain is a signal that this process is going on.
Poor posture also leads to an imbalance and weakness in our core muscles which predisposes us to injury… and more pain signals.
The Big Picture
Posture affects more than our back. It affects our whole body. Remember that sing-along called “Dem Bones?”
“The toe bone connected to the heel bone… the heel bone connected to the…”
Because all our body parts are connected, poor posture can start a chain of events that can even affect our toes. This can be the case when problems in our back affect the spinal nerves that feed our legs. An example is sciatica, or inflammation of the sciatic nerve.
Finally, as if pain and injury weren’t enough, there is also fatigue. When we hunch our backs, we don’t allow room for our lungs to fully expand. That means less oxygen to our cells, and thus less energy production.
There are numerous examples of the side effects of poor posture, but I hope you get the idea. Don’t you have enough reasons, now, to become more aware of how you sit and stand?