Posture and ergonomics are both well documented and frequently discussed whne it comes to back and neck pain: “It’s my posture, I know it’s bad”, “I’m always being told to sit up straight” etc. On searching for images you will find the classic picture of someone sitting at a desk with a small arch in their low back, the knees below the hips and feet perhaps on a small stool. The question is, does this work? My answer is: if you sit like that for long periods, do you think this is a good idea? (Sorry, it’s more of a question).
As far as I am concerned, the best posture is one that you often change. It’s alright to sit slumped, feet up on the table, upright, leaning to one side etc etc, as long as you alter this position frequently and punctuate prolonged periods of sitting with movement out of the chair and around the room—at least every 90 minutes.
To do this you need to create a habit. Much of what we do and how we do it is automatic. That is fine as we cannot be aware of everything going on, however some habits are not directing us towards health and need to be changed. To do this we must create awareness and then change the routine. Easier said than done! But it is possible.
I use the phrase ‘MOTION IS LOTION’ amongst others to remind people to move and hence nourish their body and also the representation of their body that exists in the brain.
If you are suffering with persisting pain or acute pain, it maybe that you need to adjust these parameters. You can take the advice of your caregiver. If you have neither, and lucky you, then starting this habit is a good idea anyway. There are a range of work-related strategies that I use with patients and with those seeking to improve their performance at work. Reducing the distraction of pain and discomfort is one of those, hence being able to concentrate on the task in hand.
For more details about our healthy work programmes, contact us on 07932 689081 or visit our clinic website at Specialist Pain Physio Clinics, London