How many hours a day do you spend hunched over your computer, smartphone, or tablet at your desk? When you stop to think about it, the number will probably shock you, and it’s all but certain that your posture isn’t picture perfect, which unfortunately, can lead to back and neck pain over time if you’re not careful. Fortunately, this is an entirely fixable problem. Here are five quick tips you can use, starting right now, to improve your posture and minimize your risk of back or neck injury.
Take Short Breaks Throughout The Day
Let’s start with the simplest and most basic thing. Put yourself on a schedule, and take regular walking breaks. They don’t have to be very long, even five minutes will do. The main point is to simply make time for it. Bonus tip: If you start drinking more water, you’ll have to go to the bathroom more often, and you won’t have to rely on technology to remind you. Your bladder will take care of that.
Better Back Support
Sometimes the best solutions are also the simplest. The reality is that office chairs (even really expensive ones) aren’t all that comfortable. After a few hours, it feels like you’re sitting on concrete blocks. A simple solution is to add a lumbar pillow for extra support for your lower back. They’re quite inexpensive, and dramatically increase your comfort, while automatically improving your posture.
If you’re not thinking about your posture, you’re going to slouch. The reason? Your body doesn’t like being uncomfortable, and you’ve spent so much time standing and sitting in poor posture positions that your body has gotten used to it, so of course, it becomes the new normal. Reverse that trend by being aware of your posture as you’re working. You don’t have to think about it on a constant basis, but be mindful of it, and keep your shoulders back, and your ears in line with your shoulders. You’ll be amazed at the difference this small change can make.
Uncross Those Legs
Few things are worse for your back than sitting with your legs crossed. This is another quick, easy change to make that will dramatically improve your posture and reduce the chances of back trouble later on.
Neck and Shoulder Exercises
If you’ve ever been to a chiropractor, you already know these exercises. Several times a day, gently roll your shoulders, expanding your chest out and holding that position, then completing a shoulder rotation. Do a quick set of ten reps, then simply turn your head left to right, rotating it as far as you can and holding for a few seconds before rotating back the other direction. Again, a quick rep of ten a few times a day will keep your neck and shoulders flexible.
By using these few simple tips you can increase your comfort, reduce strain and pains, get better circulation, and be well on your way to better health. Try a couple of these and see if it makes a difference in your wellbeing throughout the work day.