Bad posture back pain can be a problem for patients of all ages. Unfortunately, there are no universal rules of good posture and posture-related pain can be blamed on standing or sitting too straight or too slouched.
Back pain can cause poor posture and poor posture can cause back pain. This vicious cycle can lead to lifelong health problems for some patients.
It is far easier to correct posture-related back problems when a patient is young. Early detection of potential postural abnormalities is crucial to preventing serious back problems from developing later in life.
There are several reasons for poor posture. Postural habits start early in life and will typically continue into adulthood. Changes in lifestyle or activity level can also change one’s posture at any time during life.
Fatigue is one of the most common causes of bad posture. Tired back muscles simply can not support the skeleton as they are designed to do. Finally, old age will certainly influence postural back pain development.
Bad posture can be more pronounced when standing, walking or sitting. Slouching in any position is detrimental to one’s posture. It is important to maintain a sense of centered balance regardless of the position you are in.
Long periods of static positioning can cause extra fatigue to postural muscles. It is important to learn the proper positions for all these activities in order to prevent postural back pain. This is yet another example of an ounce of prevention going a long, long way.
Teach your children to stand up straight and to sit correctly. Provide them with the tools they need to develop good postural habits.
Make sure to move around during your day. Do not allow your body to become fatigued by maintaining any position for too long. If you must stand at work, take time to walk or sit. If you have a desk job, try a kneeling chair and take frequent breaks to stand, walk or stretch.
Make sure to get adequate rest and quality sleep. Tired postural muscles will quickly become painful postural muscles. Do not push yourself beyond your work capacity unless absolutely necessary. If you do, make sure to give yourself a break to fully recuperate before getting back to a hectic schedule.
I know, I know... Who has time for a break?
Well, make time. Your health may depend on it!
Many treatment options are available to correct postural back pain. Chiropractic, Alexander technique and physical therapy are 3 of the most common and effective means of creating better posture.
You can even rely on good old common sense:
Learn the simple premises of good posture and follow them. It is free and easy for anyone to do.
Parents should educate children about the value of proper posture and remind them of these truths as they grow into adults. One of the best ways to ensure good posture in your children is to demonstrate it yourself. Never forget, those little eyes are looking to you for an example 24 hours a day.
Prevention is almost always the answer to this condition. Back pain caused by poor posture is usually due to overworked back muscles. This type of pain can be severe, but is rarely serious. Postural correction therapy should bring about a swift end to the pain.
I personally recommend the study of martial arts to develop proper posture. Martial arts develop perfect balance for any position or activity in life. Training also develops strong core muscles that resist postural back pain even when the body is fatigued.
I could go on and on concerning the many benefits of participation in the arts, but for the sake of time, space and attention span, I will leave it super simple… Highly recommended!
I discuss proper posture and provide guidance on using posture to reduce and even end back pain in my Preventing Back Pain and Back Exercises and Stretches books. You can find both on our Cure Back Pain Forever Program page.