"We are humans and thus we are lazy." A philosophical statement that subscribes to the logic that humankind generally follows the path of least resistance. Whether or not laziness is inherent in human nature is a can of worms that we need not delve into further, but we will say that at Hayes Family Chiropractic, we have compelling evidence that, when it comes to posture, we are inclined to laziness.
As we move deeper into the information age, the age of the computer, we are slouching en masse: something about screens seems to draw our heads forward like a magnet which, incidentally, magnifies the weight of the head's burden to the spine. When we practice this sort of shoulders scrunched, back slumped and head forward posture, we are contributing to a pension of back pain that will be waiting for us in old age. What's worse, while average lifespan is increasing, age of onset for back problems is moving forward, which means we are going to be living longer, more painful lives? Wait a minute, that's not what we want.
So how did we get here? In essence, it's because slouching feels so right, even though it is so wrong. It's just the natural position your body goes for because we are not striving actively to sit up straight. Even if you start with perfect posture, each minute passed is going to increase your likelihood of slouching.
Proper sitting posture (with a computer) looks like this:
- Computer screen at eye level
- Shoulders back and relaxed, not forward and scrunched
- Ears aligned with shoulders, head centered over spine.
- Sitting up straight with butt against the back of the chair
- Knees level with hips or slightly higher
- Feet flat on the floor.
Slouching is not cool and it's about time we shifted this paradigm for good. While finding good posture may take hard work, it may be the best investment you can make for your lifetime well-being, especially if you are going to be working in front of a computer for the foreseeable future. We are here to help: helping to adjust your spine and get rid of nerve irritation, helping you strengthen and stretch the muscles that are necessary to hold good posture and teaching you what that good posture looks like in every phase of the day.
Dr. Chris Hayes, D.C.