Posture is about far more than looking confident and poised. Sitting or standing in the right position makes sure our bodies function properly. You can improve yours, starting today!

Here’s a quick test to check your posture

1. Stand with your head against a wall
2. Place heels six inches from the wall. Your buttocks and shoulder blades should touch the wall.
3. There should be less than 2 inches between your neck or small of the back and the wall. A larger gap indicates bad posture and a curving spine.

DOS AND DON’TS

Sitting

DO:
-Keep your head straight and not tilted up or down
-Keep your shoulders back and try to relax
-Sit with your knees slightly lower than your hips
-Keep your feet flat on the floor

DON’T
-Try to keep your back ramrod straight
-Work without support for your arms
-Tuck feet under the chair
-Cross your legs above the knees, as this may cause poor circulation

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Standing

DO:
– Keep your shoulders back and aligned
– Use your stomach muscles to keep your body straighter
-Slightly bend your knees to ease pressure on the hips
-Use quality shoes that offer good support

DON’T
– Stick your chest out. Instead, try to keep your chest perpendicular to the ground
– Stand in the same position for long periods of time. Move around and shift your weight
-Wear high heels when standing for long periods of time

Walking

DO:
-Keep your chin parallel to the ground
-Hit the ground with your heel first, and then roll onto the toe
-Keep your stomach and buttocks in line with the rest of the body

DON’T:
-Look down at your feet. Instead, look several feet ahead of you
-Arch your back

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Running

DO:
-Keep your head up and looking forward
-Keep your arms loose and elbows at a 90 degree angle
-Lean forward slightly
-Hit the ground with the midpoint of your foot and roll it forward to the toe

DON’T:
-Hunch your shoulders
-Bend at the waist
-Lift your knees too high. Go with what feels natural.

Sleeping

DO:
-Use a firm mattress that provides support
-Minimise spinal curves by using pillows as necessary or upgrading your mattress
-Stretch before bed to ease tense muscles
-Sleep on your side with a pillow between your legs, on your back, or under your knees for better support

DON’T:
-Sleep on your stomach. It can cause pressure on the cervical spine (vertebrae in the neck)
-Sleep with a tall stack of pillows that causes your neck to bend unnaturally

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Source: Greatist.com