With more people working and studying from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen a large increase in the number of patients presenting to Clonee Physiotherapy with back, neck and shoulder pains. These patients often volunteer information like, “I have terrible posture” or “I slouch too much”. But is posture really to blame?
The answer is YES. Sitting posture is usually a factor in the pains of the working-from-home population but maybe not in the way that you think.
Our sitting posture simply refers to how we hold our body when we sit. ‘Good posture’ refers to a particular positioning of our body which maintains the natural curves of the spine. ‘Bad Posture’ or postural dysfunction refers to positioning of the body out of its optimal position.
Our posture may be dictated by a number of factors, such as:
- workstation set-up
- the nature of our work
- our own anatomy including areas of tightness or weakness.
Posture IS important – of course it is. Referring to the ‘Check Your Body Posture’ picture above, the figure in the centre of the image is less likely to experience pain that the figure on the left hand side.
However, HOW we sit is not the most important factor but HOW LONG we sit for. Prolonged bad posture is what can lead to pain and stiffness.
One of my frequent explanations is, “I slouch when I sit too, but I don’t sit for a living so I never have to deal with the consequences of my poor posture”.
Quite simply, if you have poor sitting posture but you don’t sit for long periods then your posture is unlikely to be a source of pain for you. On the other hand, even if you sit well but you sit for long hours everyday, it is very likely that you will still experience pain as a result.
Issues associated with poor posture:
Things you can do to ease/avoid your pain:
- Improve your workstation set-up
- Take regular breaks from your sitting position
- Change your position of work if possible
- Partake in regular exercise
- Address areas of tightness/weakness with specific exercises or stretches
If you are suffering from any of the issues mentioned above you may benefit from an appointment with one of our Chartered Physiotherapists. Call us on (01) 825 2623 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you can book an appointment below.