Do you want to learn how to correct your back posture? When you work at a desk every day, you’ve probably heard how important posture is. You’ve listened to all the advice about adjusting your chair correctly, sitting up straight, keeping your feet flat on the floor, etc. There is a lack of information about what to do when we try these measures, what to do when they’re not working, or when we fail to meet them.
Do you tend to slouch? Slouching can cause tight muscles in the neck and pectoral muscles, which can eventually cause numbness or shooting pains down the arms, leading to injury in the arms and wrists. Repetitive motions that you use every day at your desk (typing, reaching for your mouse, etc.) can shorten your muscles, which causes a muscle imbalance. Similarly, reaching movements and remaining seated for extended periods can cause a muscle imbalance in your hips. Learning how to correct your back posture will benefit you in the long run.
You might be feeling sore and frustrated because these tips you keep reading aren’t working for you, so what do we do to stop feeling sore when we’ve tried all that advice? Beyond the obvious answer of working on your posture and making sure your workspace is as ergonomically friendly as possible, the solution is a lot simpler than you might think.
The answer is stretching. Try stretching three specific areas to help correct muscle imbalance and stretch your muscles to keep them strong. These three stretching exercises should be indispensable in your routine to learn how to correct your back posture.
Sometimes our shoulders get so tight that we get stuck in a position with our shoulders hunched forward. The goal to fix this is to stretch your pectoral muscles. This stretch can be done quickly by standing in a doorway with one arm bent at ninety degrees and placing your forearm on the door frame, and taking a step forward, stretching the pectoral muscle. You should hold this for around thirty seconds to allow the muscles to stretch and then switch arms.
If you find this angle isn’t working, try moving the elbow slightly up or down until you find the angle that works. Adjust your elbow as needed if you feel nerve pain at the elbow.
Strengthening the upper back will help correct the muscle imbalance. You can quickly work on strengthening your upper back by squeezing your shoulder blades together in the back as if you were trying to make them touch in the middle of your back. Hold this stretch for ten seconds and repeat three to five times, depending on your comfort.
Stretching your neck can be accomplished by gently bringing your ear to your right or left shoulder. You can try to bring the ear slightly behind your shoulder to stretch the back muscles of the neck. As with the pectoral stretch, hold this for thirty seconds, and then do the other side.
If you feel like stretching is not working well, try applying a heat pack for a few minutes (or have a warm bath) before you stretch. Be careful not to make the heat pack or bath water too hot! Applying heat will make the muscles more pliable and easier to stretch. You can also use a cold pack after stretching to prevent inflammation, but for no more than ten minutes.
With daily stretching to lengthen and strengthen your muscles, you should find it easier to sit upright for more extended periods at a time and feel less pain. Remember to keep up your regular ergonomic office practices, and working on how to correct your back posture will be a breeze!
Do you think you have a better handle on knowing how to correct your back posture? Do you think you could work these simple stretches into your daily work routine? The trick will be remembering to do the stretches and staying on top of them. By doing these stretches, you should feel less pain and improve your posture over time.
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