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How poor posture can affect your health

Upper crossed syndrome

Poor posture whether sitting or standing can cause a variety of problems.  Neck pain, shoulder pain, upper back pain and arm pain can be

assoiciated with shortening of certain muscles and weakness in others.  Sitting at a desk all day, texting and watching T.V. causes a slumped

position and head tilt forward position over time sometimes referred to as "Nerd Neck".  Athletes can cause a muscle imbalance much in the

same way by training certain muscle groups of the chest, neck, and shoulders while neglecting other muscle groups of the same area. Upper

Crossed Syndrome can result because of the aforementioned scenario.  The overactive muscles combined with the under used or weak muscles

overlap causing  an "X" shape to develop.  while standing a straight line should intersect with the knee, hip, deltoid, and ear.  If the ear and

deltoid are forward on this line, UCS may exsist. Symptoms occurring may include: 

  • Neck Pain
  • Headaches
  • Pain in the upper back
  • Pain in the shoulders
  • Low back pain
  • Decreased range of motion in the neck and shoulders
  • Pain and numbness in the upper arms

Tight or overactive muscles usually associated are:

  • Pectorals
  • Upper Trapezius
  • Levator Scapula
  • Sternocleidomastoid
  • Sub Occipitals
  • Subscapularis
  • Latisimus Dorsi
  • Arm Flexors

Weak or underactive muscles affected are:

  • Longus Capitis
  • Longus Colli
  • Serratus Anterior
  • Rhomboids
  • Lower Trapezius
  • Rotator Cuff
  • Arm Extensors

Some simple strength exercises along with stretching are an effective way to correct this type of posture.  Strength exercises would include:

  • Standing or Seated Rows
  • Prone Shoulder Blade Squeezes
  • Triceps Extension
  • Neck Bridges

Stretching the before mentioned tight muscles on a mat, standing, or with a foam roller must be incorporated with your strength training routine.

Bad posture can cause other problems along with back and neck pain.   Fatigue, difficulty breathing, and headaches are also attributed.  The

benefits of good posture are numerous.  Fewer muscle tension headaches, decreased pressure on cervical disc and ligaments, increased lung

capacity, and decreased fatigue.  Most of us are addicted to our mobile devices and that keeps our head down for long periods of time are bad

habits and contribute to poor posture.  Other long term issues include TMJ, herniated or ruptured disc, and muscle spasms. Incontinence from

increased abdominal pressure, constipation, heartburn, and slowed digestion are all linked to poor posture. Althought pain is usually the first

sign of a problem,  Look in the mirror and see if you have a protruding head and rounded shoulders.  

Some good habits for poor posture everyone should do.

Have an ergonomic work station 

Take breaks at work

Stand and stretch 3-5 times a day 

Yoga

Yoga goes back 5000 years to ancient India.  It combines midfulness with physical movement to live a long and healthy life.  It improves

muscle strength, flexibility, and reduce stress.  Many yoga poses can help with correcting poor posture.

Change your sedentary lifestyle

The human body was ment to move.  Exercise of any type beats sitting on your couch all day.  Self correct when you catch yourself slouching

and be mindful of your posture at all times and live a healthier life.

https://www.uchealth.org/today/pain-in-the-neck-how-to-fix-posture

https://www.lompocvmc.com/blogs/2021/april/importance-of-good-posture/

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/yoga-by-benefit/neck-pain/posture-improvement-yoga-poses/

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/3-surprising-risks-of-poor-posture

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