What Does Your Posture Say About You?
By definition, “posture” most commonly means: the position in which one holds his/her body while sitting or standing. While this is true, your posture has many more layers than just the position of your physical body. In humans, posture can provide a significant amount of important information through nonverbal cues. Studies have also demonstrated the effects of body posture on emotions. This research can be traced back to Charles Darwin’s studies of emotion and movement in humans and animals.
Let us begin by taking a quick look at the physical impacts of poor posture. It’s no secret that many aspects of modern-day life can easily contribute to poor posture. Some of these include the way we hold our heads while we text, the ergonomics we gravitate toward while sitting in front of a computer and wearing high heels. Did you know according to a 2019 study, the average person in the U.S. sends/receives 94 text messages every single day? When texting on a phone, it is common to bend the head forward and look down at a 45- or 60-degree angle, which places about 50 to 60 pounds of force on the neck. The neck is not able to withstand this amount of pressure over a prolonged period. While that statistic may be alarming, another recent study shows that up to 71% of full-time office workers practice poor ergonomics while at work. This means that most of us are more susceptible to musculoskeletal disorders. These are debilitating, painful conditions affecting muscles, tendons, tendon sheaths and nerves. The most common of these are carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and bursitis. Poor workspace ergonomics can also be responsible for causing headaches, stiff neck, and ganglion cysts (hard, pea- or larger- sized lumps which develop on joints or in tendon sheaths).
And ladies, let us just skip the high heels! We all know that they make our “dogs bark” but they can also cause serious long-term damage. Walking in high heels causes your spine to sway unnaturally, and stresses your lumbar erector spinae muscle, leading to a sore lower back. Heels put extra weight on the inner side of the knees and knee joints, leading to the risk of twisting injuries to the knees. They are also known to damage toenails, worsen bunions, and increase your chance of experiencing muscle spasms. Do yourself a solid and save those 3-inchers for an occasional night out.
The good news is you do have control over practicing good posture and properly caring for your spinal health. Just don’t wait until it’s too late! Be cautious of the things we’ve discussed here and seek/maintain proper chiropractic care. According to joint.com, some of the top benefits of chiro care include:
• Improved Nerve Communication in the Body
• Improved Physical Function and Performance
• Relief from Back and Neck Pain
• Relief from Stress and Tension Disorders
• Relief from Chronic Injuries
We’ve looked at posture and the body. It’s time to look at what else posture means. As I said earlier, posture can provide a significant amount of important information through nonverbal cues. It also reflects upon one’s emotional state. Many studies have shown that certain patterns of body movements are indicative of specific emotions. Anger, sadness, and disgust are by far the most recognized body postures that are indicative of emotions. For example, anger is often expressed in forward, whole body movement while sadness is expressed with sunken shoulders and a drooping neck position. In contrast, though, standing tall with a strong posture reflects confidence and a proper state of mind. According to Stanford neuroscientist, Joseph Wielgosz, “change your posture, change your mood.” As a devoted meditator myself, I know that practicing good body posture is a significant part of establishing a solid state of mindfulness which heavily impacts the way in which I view the world around me.
In summary, when I hold myself tall, strong, and confidently, I am far less likely to assume the role of a victim. I will have a better, more positive outlook and believe that I can conquer more of life’s hurdles. If I choose to engage in regular activities that focus on strengthening both my physical and mental wellbeing such as yoga and meditation, the more able I am to live in the moment instead of getting wound up in worry and fear. You know what they say… “worries are just prayers for things you do not want.” Take control of your life by mindfully practicing good posture and making both physical and mental wellbeing a priority.
Here are a few products we offer that can be used in conjunction with good posture, proper chiropractic care and intentional mindfulness:
• CHIROFLOW PREMIUM WATERBASE PILLOW: Chiroflow Waterbase Pillow provides outstanding comfort and responsive support for the head and neck with its water layer at the base. It features thermal insulator to fully encase the water layer to prevent body heat from being drawn from the head, neck and shoulders. It adjusts to head movement, providing continuous cervical support while sleeping. Many experience improved neck pain relief and a better quality of sleep with this product.
• LIGAPLEX: Ligaplex I from Standard Process is a natural joint and connective tissue supplement that contains a blend of key nutrients that provide acute ligament and muscle support.
• DEEP BLUE: doTERRA Deep Blue is perfect for a soothing massage after a long day of work. Wintergreen, Camphor, Peppermint, Ylang Ylang, Helichrysum, Blue Tansy, Blue Chamomile, and Osmanthus work together to soothe and cool. After long hours on the computer, try rubbing Deep Blue proprietary blend on your fingers, wrists, shoulders, and neck. A few drops of Deep Blue Soothing Blend diluted in doTERRA Fractionated Coconut Oil can be part of a cooling and comforting massage.
*also see doTERRA DEEP BLUE RUB*
“Those who think they don’t have time for Chiropractic care will sooner or later have to make time for illness.”
-Oxford English Dictionary, https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/posture
-Mayoclinic.org, Posture: Align Yourself for Good Health, December 14, 2016
-Armed Forces of Medical College, AFMC.org: What Your Posture Says About You by Anne Wasson, June 28, 2019
-Tenpercent.com: meditation weekly blog, Change Your Posture, Change Your Mood by Joseph Wielgosz, May 7, 2019
-Healthproductsforyou.com: Chiroflow Waterbase Pillow
-Doterra.com: Deep Blue and Deep Blue Rub