Since the first quarter of the year, COVID-19 has affected our every move. Even if you kept yourself and family safe from getting this virus, it has still influenced our postures.
Whether unemployed, homeschooled, virtually working from home, or being confined without normal travel or play, chances are that the postures assumed each day are limited. This can have a long lasting effect on the body.
Posture is the position that one holds their body in. Whether sitting, standing, lying down, or playing, there are optimal postures for each. At rest, proper posture is such that your body is stacked or aligned from head to toes that your center of gravity is aligned and your muscles and ligaments do not have to work too hard because of being in a state of balance. This is ideal.
Commonly, bad habits such as slumping forward with the head or shoulders or having an excessive arch in the low back throws the center of gravity of one’s body off. When this occurs, the body systems have to work harder for maintenance.
Who knows someone in the family that exhibits bad posture whether it be a forward head, rounded shoulders, hunched upper back, or arched low back? Many blame heredity for their postural issues.
Actual, this posture many times becomes a learned response from the positions you adopt during your day. For example, some tall lanky families all assume similar postures unless it is recognizable and the person then puts in the effort to change this newly developing behavior.
If the habits were poor to begin with, the body really can bein trouble. Now we have all had some limitations. Did you know that it only takes 6 weeks to create a habit?
Someone who is now at home and not accustomed to working from their table at home with their laptop can get into some trouble. The ideal positioning seems impossible. The eyes have to focus downward, perhaps causing slouching of the neck and back or rounding of the shoulders. Muscles become overly shortened on one side of the body while being stretched on the other.
This alone over a period of days and weeks can become a habit that is hard to break.
Now, some can get out more into society (hopefully with safety) while others still remain home while working or going to school. Despite this, new bad habits might linger.
It is time to address your posture. You may even ask a close friend or family member if they notice any changes. You could even screen each other. Hold each other accountable and figure out what to do to break this new bad habit.
What can you do to help yourself?
First, if at home, take frequent breaks and get up and walk around to get your circulation going. This helps to decrease blood stagnation and even gets the fluid in your joints warmed up so that prolonged poor positioning does not cause stiffness in the body.
Second, lift your arms and legs up and down and step side to side to stimulate all of those muscles that support you,
Third, lay down and unload your neck and spine. When in the supine position, put your arms out to the side, palms facing up, and relax them in that position. Let the muscles relax here while taking air slowing in and out to open up the rib cage.
The body is an amazing machine that is taken for granted. Do not let habits abuse your body. If you see that you have postural habits that do not seem quite right, get checked and try and make corrections to let your body once again flourish. Good mobility, stability, and alignment is crucial to normal function and less breakdown of the body over time.
You may not feel limitations now but almost for certain, you will feel them in the future and you may not even know why you all of a sudden hurt.
Take the challenge. Posture yourself for success. Be aware, aligned, and take care of yourself so that you can always continue to the best of your ability all of the fun things that you want to do.
Time will continue to get better so prepare yourself and be ready for life to return to a better new normal. If you need an expert to help you, reach out, and call 239 263-9348.To Your Health!