How to Cope When You Have Stooped Posture

How To Stooped Posture?

Stooped PostureStooped posture or curved spine is one that fails to develop normal front-to-back arches, causing undue weight to be carried on the vertebral discs. The curve in the spine or the backbone that causes it to curve forward and look stooped or hunched is called kyphosis. A stooped posture is a common postural problem in older people. A curved spine is also more prone to disk disease and arthritis.

Stooped posture is found to affect the ligaments and spinal muscles, increasing the spines risk of injury. If the stooped posture is very severe, the nerves of the spine can become compressed, which can cause severe back pain. While a mild stooped posture is a common characteristic of Parkinsonian conditions, some MSA patients with trunk muscle dystonia develop an extremely forward-bent posture known as camptocormia.

Posture can have a similar effect on your emotions, forward head carriage, rounded shoulders, and a stooped posture is the posture of someone sad. Overstretched and strained muscles on one side of the curved spine can be relieved while contracted muscles on the other can be lengthened and released. Some people with a curved spine can benefit from physical therapy and exercises that improve flexibility.

Here’s a video explaining how to correct stooped posture.

Stop Slouching! Here’s How to Improve Your Posture

Here’s why you shouldn’t shrug off the warning.

Stooped posture

Sitting up straight can help boost your mental power.

Posture check! Ha, caught you, didn’t I?

Walk through any Starbucks or a typical office setting, and you’re likely to observe a sea of hunched-over humanity. You don’t have to be sitting to slump, either. There’s also the stand-and-slouch which easily morphs into a stooping stroll.

Whether glued to a screen, driving, flying, yapping or texting on a smartphone, we Americans are a people who have pitifully poor posture. If you think I’m mostly concerned about appearance or spinal burdens, you’re wrong. New science reveals there are hidden dangers lurking in every slouch. Yes, mom’s admonishment to “Sit up straight!” was spot on.

If you pitch the computer posture and stop slouching, you will:

1. Feel less depressed. Hot off the presses is new research noting that, as opposed to those with a slumped posture, people who maintain an upright seated posture in the face of stress maintain excellent self-esteem and experience a more positive attitude and mood.

The slouchers were more vulnerable to negative self-talk. Further, a straight back posture increases the rate of speech, enhances mindfulness and decreases self-absorption. This study supports other research that has established the powerful relationship between the body’s muscular engagement and an individual’s emotional state. In essence, doing something as simple as sitting up straight can build better stress resilience.

2. Boost mental power and confidence. Harvard social psychologist Amy Cuddy demonstrated that when people practice what she refers to as “high power poses” for just 1 minute per pose, they experienced profound neuroendocrine and behavioral changes. This included an increase in testosterone and a significant decrease in the stress hormone cortisol. Even if someone did not feel confident to start with, just by practicing these poses, they eventually felt more powerful. Cuddy proved that indeed you fake it until you become it.

3. Look younger and flatten your waistline. Even skinny supermodel Kate Moss looks older by slouching and allowing her abs to pouch out. No matter how slender you are, anyone can generate a bulging belly by simply slouching. Attractive? Not! Stand up straight and you’ll elongate your spine and reduce or even eliminate that tummy bump.

4. Optimize lung and brain oxygenation. When you’re pitched forward into a serious slump, you can decrease the amount of oxygen entering your lungs by 30 percent. Sit up and you’ll pour more precious air into your lungs and let the freshly oxygenated blood flow continue to the brain. The result is improved energy, attention, focus and overall mentation, or mental activity.

5. Strengthen your spine. Time to pitch the computer posture. Back pain is common, and good posture can decrease neck and back pain from hours of screen time. Did you know that for every inch you hold your head forward, you add 10 pounds of extra pressure on your spine? If you’re leaning into your computer monitor by two inches, that’s an extra 20 pounds of stress for your back and spinal column.

This constant digital screen hunch can cause your muscles to tense up and spasm, and the result is often a tension headache. Top that with a recent study showing that texting can add 50 pounds of extra pressure on a person’s spine. That’s like hauling a kindergarten student on your back all day.

It’s easy to stop slouching. You just need to be more mindful of your posture, and start practicing a few simple exercises.

Taking a stand on slouching. Stand up, and elongate your spine so you’re tall but not stiff. Keep relaxing as you lengthen as much as you can. Plant your feet firmly into the ground. Slowly come up onto your toes and then your heels. Press your whole foot into the ground. Now pay attention to your pelvis. First, arch your lower back. Then, tuck your pelvis.

Lengthen your spine as you find that center point between the arch and tuck. Next, lift your shoulders forward, then up to your ears and finally roll them back. While you do this, keep lengthening your neck and head staying tall, as you gently pull your shoulders down. Finally, level your head and your chin. The result is a great standing posture.

Pinch your way to perfect posture. Whether sitting or standing, practice the shoulder blade pinch as often as you can. While keeping your shoulders down, squeeze your shoulder blades together. Imagine that you’re trying to grab a pen that’s balanced on your spine. Hold that for 10 to 20 seconds and repeat this several times a day.

Get back at hunching. While you’re watching TV or just relaxing, plop onto the floor and do a back extension. Yoga folks will recognize this as a cobra-like pose. Lie on your abdomen, keeping your arms at your side. Your head is looking down with your forehead touching the ground. Keep looking down while you contract your back muscles, lifting your torso off the floor and lengthening from the top of your head through your spine, supported by your hands. Lower your body and repeat five times.

Be an angel. Wall Angels are geared to strengthening the muscles in between your shoulder blades to help keep them drawn back and together. First, stand with your feet wide and your head and back flat against a wall. Bring your arms out to your sides at shoulder height and bend your elbows 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders, arms and the backs of your palms lightly touching the wall.

Slowly raise your arms overhead, extending them into a wide ‘V’ and staying in contact with the wall. Bend your elbows, and slide your arms back to the starting position. Do two sets of 10 to 15 reps, and feel free to repeat these anytime you can throughout the day.

It’s time to take your posture seriously. This is a big deal, as it really does have an impact on your health and well-being. Ditch the slouch for a tall, confident power pose posture. Hey, posture check!

Correct posture means changing position regularly

Don’t underestimate the importance of correct posture – bad or stooped posture can lead to lower back pain, especially if you stay in the same position for too long. For some people, a stooped posture can stem from osteoporosis, which causes reduced bone strength. The people who are having continuous back pain or are having a stooped posture are also advised to go for a bone density scan.

As an expert of a chiropractor, correcting posture is one of our specialty. We are here to help you with your stooped posture before it’s too late. Call to schedule an appointment: (619) 831-8777.

Related Articles:
Strengthen Your Core to Relieve Lumbar Lordosis 
Laptop Posture Makes Sense

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Author: Allison Yardley

Allison has 6 years in practice as a Chiropractor's Assistant and is a licensed Massage Therapist who writes for numerous blogs online. Feel free to comment or ask questions regarding any of Alley's blog posts.