Perfect Posture? There’s no such thing!
There is no perfect posture - your best posture is your next one! Meaning that movement and change are key here.
Our body doesn’t like being stuck in one position for long, we are designed to move - but for various reasons we are generally more inactive than we would like to be - stuck behind a computer or on a device, or maybe sitting for prolonged periods feeding babes. Often we may feel neck or back stiffness after periods of immobility. Sometimes even experiencing pain when we move from being in one place for too long - without having done anything to ‘injure’ the area.
A simple way to understand why we can feel pain or stiffness in our back or neck after sitting for too long is to do the following:
- Get your little finger (assuming you don’t have any issues with your finger!) and stretch it backwards as far as it goes - to where you feel a stretch/tightness
- Hold it there for 20-30 seconds
- On releasing, try to wiggle your finger
What you will likely feel is stiffness and some difficulty moving the finger joints and maybe even a bit of pain! This is because your finger has been held in one position for a time and the joint and other structures have gotten used to this position. When you move away from it, it takes some time to adjust and move freely. Your back and neck are really no different to your finger joint - they also don’t like being in one position for too long! So sometimes that pain or stiffness is just because your body is complaining that you haven’t moved enough!
Sometimes we can’t get up from the desk, or we are holding our little one while they sleep and so we are stuck to the couch or chair! But you can still move or change your position in your chair. Remember change is key - even a subtle change in your position will help - moving from the front to the back of the chair will help. It’s better than nothing!
Try a rotation stretch in the chair - sitting tall, reach around, hold the back of the chair and gently twist, repeating a few times each way.
Try an extension stretch in the chair - Reach up with your arms high, hold them together and reach backwards up over your head to arch your body backwards.
Strengthening through pilates, yoga or HIIT sessions will also be of huge benefit to supporting your body in all positions, including sitting. Each of these forms of movement can be found on the Hey Mama Movement online app, and keep an eye out for Daz's next blog post with more about what these are and why they are beneficial to us.
At the end of the day when you may have a bit more time you can also use the roller/towel extension stretch posted to the Hey Mama Movement facebook page which is great at opening up your chest, getting you away from that slouched sitting position.
The link below will take you to the Roller/Towel Extension Stretch on the Hey Mama Movement facebook page:
And whenever you can take the opportunity to get up off the chair or couch & move that body!