Bad Posture is bad for you. Bad Posture negatively impacts performance: and diminishes the effectiveness of exercise (ironically many people exercise in bad posture). Bad Posture negatively impacts the quality of your life. Bad Posture costs over $86 billion in health care a year.
About 80% of us will experience back pain in our lives (1) and about 30% of us at any given time. The incidence of back pain has increase 65% since 1997. US health care costs treating back pain is estimated over $240 billion a year (2008 stat), not to mention that it greatly diminishes the quality of our life. Back pain is the second leading cause of visits to the doctor, is the leading cause of disability in Americans younger than 45, and over half of working Americans admit to having back pain each year. Women over 50 are particularly susceptible to bad posture resulting in Kyphosis (round-back) and loss of height. (7) According to Dr. Oz a main cause is the simple things we do every day…our back pain comes from our bad habit of slouching. (21)
Bad Posture is not good for us. We look and feel bad. Bad posture causes orthopedic problems in the neck, back and shoulders…causing pain, headaches, spinal disorders, limited functionality, etc. and predisposing us to greater risk of injury (12). Bad Posture also interferes with good health (Chinese Medicine, 7). According to Nobel Prize recipient Dr. Roger Sperry, poor posture can lead to many health issues such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, depression and more…essentially our slouching posture shuts down healthy energy flow through our body interfering with normal biological functions (1,2,9).
Bad posture also negatively influences one’s mood and energy (8,10). According to research at SF State University, bad posture can lead to negative and pessimistic feelings and thoughts making us feel depressed. Careers and relationships become more challenging. We find we have less energy and motivation to achieve our goals…fulfilling our life-purpose becomes difficult.
A main cause of back and neck pain is bad posture, is our habit of slouching. (2, 13, 19 ) Slouching or “Kyphosis is an abnormal rearward curvature of the upper back; hunchback” (20). When we slouch our head, shoulders and neck lean forward. This puts tremendous strain on our muscles to hold our head and body upright…every inch your head leans forward, for example at the computer, adds 10 pounds of pressure to the spine. (21) Slouching can add as much as a 100 pounds of extra stress (21) on your back.
Slouching and its negative impact develops over time and becomes a conditioned habit. The primary cause of slouching is our current lifestyle of leaning over our computers and digital devices for many hours a day…at work and at home (3,9,19). As a result, not only are we slouching when we sit, we slouch when we stand, walk and do any movements (even exercise).
bad posture is a bad habit. we need to change our habits.”
Strengthening our body for healthy alignment and balance and cultivating a habit of good posture.
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References of Somatics:
SOMATICS, Thomas Hanna, 1988. Thomas Hanna defined somatics as “…the field of study dealing with somatic phenomena, i.e., the human being as experienced by himself (or herself) from the inside.” He defined soma as the body experienced from within.
Awakening Somatic Intelligence: The Art and Practice of Embodied Mindfulness, Risa Kaparo, Ph.D, 2012
News Stories of the importance of Good Posture: