WHAT IS POSTURE?
Before we define what posture is, let’s define what posture is NOT.
Posture is not about using your muscles to ‘hold’ you upright. It is not about getting your muscles strong to help you compensate.
Posture is how your body holds itself upright against gravity, naturally without muscular effort. It is your spinal alignment, or how well your bones balance. Upright posture is critical for your overall health and wellbeing, read on to find out just how important.
GOOD POSTURE EXAMPLE: This is what good posture looks like: you should be able to draw a plumb line from your ear through your shoulder, through your hip and through your knee to your ankle.
BAD POSTURE EXAMPLE: This is what bad posture looks like: head pitching forward, shoulders rounded forward, rounded upper back and slouchy low back.
WHY IS POSTURE SO IMPORTANT?
Upright posture is critical for your overall health for 2 main reason:
Pain and Dysfunction Nervous system function
- PAIN & DYSFUNCTION: Much like a wheel alignment in your car, if your tyres are in good alignment, your car will work well. However, if your tyres are ‘out of alignment’ not only will the tyres wear out quicker, but it will also put stress on the rest of the vehicle. This results in different problems such as steering issues, braking and handling issues, plus the car will be far less efficient.
The same is true for you spine.
If your spine is ‘out of alignment’ which is most easily recognised by poor posture, it will put added pressure on the joints of your spine. This causes the spinal joints to wear quicker (arthritis), and will also add stress elsewhere in your body resulting in things like back pain, sciatica, neck pain, headaches, migraines, shoulder problems, knee pain and many more.
- NERVOUS SYSTEM FUNCTION: Your spine protects your nerve system. Your nerve system is the communication pathway between your brain and the body.
Every second, millions of messages are being sent between the brain and the body, coordinating your every bodily function from breathing, digestion, movement, healing and many many many more.
If your posture is upright, it provides a clear communication path between the brain and the body. Allowing your body to function at its best and effectively coordinate all of the amazing functions.
If your posture is forward and slouchy as described above, it causes a stress on your nerve system. This stress on your nerve system places your entire body is a stressed state, known as a sympathetic state.
This stressed state of your nerve system hampers your bodies natural ability to heal and regulate.
Chiropractic, ABC in particular, focuses on ensuring your posture is upright so you can not only feel great and move with freedom, but more importantly so your nerve system can effectively heal and regulate.
Chiropractic helps remove interference and stress from your nerve system so your body can do the healing. Naturally.
WHAT CAUSES BAD POSTURE?
Posture is not something that changes over night. It is something that typically gets worse (more rounded and forward) over time. It is caused by the build up of small misalignments in the spine and their associated compensations.
Sounds confusing? Let us explain:
The body has an amazing ability to heal and fix itself. This is self evident when you cut yourself. Your body knows how to heal. The body obviously can not correct everything, otherwise there would be no need for chiropractors, medical doctors or other health professionals. The human body can not correct certain problems. In the spine, if a bone is misaligned in a FORWARD direction, there are no muscles behind the spine to prevent or correct this problem. When a bone is misaligned forward, it puts pressure on the spine and nerve system. As a result, the body will form compensation patterns to take pressure away from your body. (eg. in the same way as if you have a cut on the bottom of your foot, you will walk with a limp) Over the years, the more misalignments/compensations you develop the more your body gets pulled forward into a bad posture. And, the more rigid and stiff your body gets also. Think of how your flexibility gets worse as you age, this is one of the big causes. What causes these misalignments?
Trauma (contact sports, falls, accidents)
Repetitive movements (poor sleeping position, desk work)
SITTING (sitting is a big one!)
Stress (physical and emotional)
Chemical stress (alcohol, smoking etc)
WHAT PROBLEMS ARE ASSOCIATED WITH POOR POSTURE?
- Low Back Pain/Sciatica
- Neck Pain
- Shoulder Pain
- Elbow/Wrist Pain
- Carpal Tunnel
- Knee Pain
- Foot/Ankle Pain
- Arthritis/Spinal Degeneration
- Jaw Problems
- Breathing Issues
HOW DOES CHIROPRACTIC HELP POSTURE?
Chiropractic ABC in particular is concerned with correcting only the misalignments that you body can not correct itself. By correcting these misalignments, it allows your body to release layers of compensation and other problems.
Our goal is to get your body into a nice, EFFORTLESS, posture.
Effortless because posture is not about training your muscles to get stronger to hold you upright, it is about getting your spinal alignment right so your bones stack and balance well.
OUR CHIROPRACTIC METHOD:
Our chiropractic method, Advanced Bio-structural Correction (ABC™) focuses on improving spinal alignment and posture for people of all ages.
To read more about ABC, click here.