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5 Posture Mistakes People Easily Make, And How To Do Them Right

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5 Posture Mistakes People Easily Make, And How To Do Them Right

Remember how grandma used to heckle you about sitting up straight, ramrod back and all? Well, turns out she was 100 percent right. Many of us don’t really realize how we end up abusing our muscles, ligaments and tendons, when we do something as inane as sitting or sleeping wrong.

A bad posture causes unnecessary stress to a body part – the common ones being the back, neck and shoulder muscles. Over time, this stress causes the muscles to get weak and strained, leading to aches and chronic pain as well as a tendency towards sprain and injury [1].

So here are a few points on the ‘right’ posture to have when doing myriad things – and how avoiding posture mistakes helps stave off any muscle pains, pulls or sprains [2].

Posture One: Phone Usage

With the average American spending about 37 hours a month engaged in phone apps, games or texting – and the associated neck ailments related to poor posture while doing it – we decided to go with the posture of using smartphones first. Sitting hunched in a chair with your head hanging down to look at your phone is possibly the worst posture to text in. This causes your neck muscles to take all the weight of your 10-20 pound head, giving rise to cervical aches, herniated disks and tension headaches and an overall fatigue in your neck muscles [3].

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All JayZ is getting, is a crick in his neck; Image via Bossip.com
    All JayZ is getting, is a crick in his neck; Image via Bossip.com

    The correct posture is for you to raise the phone to chin height, keeping the back straight and the shoulders square. Remember to stretch your neck and rotate your shoulders frequently when using the phone for long hours to ease the stress on the muscles and not make any posture mistakes.

    Via DescribeTheFauna/EthanYoung

      Posture Two: Sleeping

      Think you sleep right? Then why do you have an ache the first thing in the morning? When you stay in bed, reading or watching TV, or even sleeping with your head propped up by a stack of pillows – you are basically giving yourself a crick in the neck, and a longtime practice of this will ultimately leave you with chronic neck or back pain [4].

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      danielinbed_web

        The correct sleeping posture is to avoid propping up your head on the pillow and thereby keeping your neck straight; and supporting your hips with another pillow while keeping the spine mildly arched. A good and restful sleep in the correct posture will stave off any back or neck strains.

        Via DescribeTheFauna/EthanYoung

          Posture Three: Standing

          We all think that we’ve been doing this right since we first learnt how to stand when we were pints. We think wrong. While different body types tend to stand a little different, it’s basically the center of gravity that dictates the correct way of standing. Remember that you may be in a hurry to get to somewhere – but that’s no excuse to pitch your upper body forward and commit a litany of posture mistakes [5].

          celebbadposture
            So what if they are celebs – they spell bad posture! Image via hobokenbackpain.com

            Think of a gravity line extending downwards from the center of your head – it should fall between your ears, shoulders, hips knees and ankles – this is the correct standing posture.

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            Via DescribeTheFauna/EthanYoung

              Posture Four: Sitting

              The first thing about desk work is to remember not to hunch yourself in your seat. Also remember to keep changing your positions through the day. Sitting still is a recipe for a disaster called back pain [6].

              9copy
                Yet another bad posture by Beiber; Image Via cosmopolitan.com

                The most important thing about desk work is lumbar support – the lower back needs to be in contact with a firm, comfortable surface – not hovering a foot away. The others things to keep in mind that your elbows should be at 90 degree angles and the feet need to be flat on the ground.

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                Via DescribeTheFauna/EthanYoung

                  Posture Five: Walking

                  If you are walking with your feet turned out, you are walking wrong [7].

                  10
                    Maybe we should rename this article as The Bad Postures of Beiber! Image via friedjunk.com

                    The toes need to point straight, and the shoulders need to be relaxed. Walking is a rhythmic thing; you need to rock forward from your heel and then push off from your toe. The trick lies in balancing your gait with hands free by your side and swinging in natural motion. And remember to tighten the core a little – pulled in abs will make your walking that much more efficient.

                    Via DescribeTheFauna/EthanYoung

                      Remember that the correct posture comes with practice. Keep checking yourself over posture mistakes and soon good posture will come as naturally as breathing.

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                      Reference

                      [1] http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Backpain/Pages/back-pain-and-common-posture-mistakes.aspx
                      [2] http://greatist.com/health/ultimate-guide-good-posture
                      [3] http://www.medicaldaily.com/texting-puts-50-pounds-pressure-your-spine-adding-poor-postures-side-effects-311152
                      [4] http://greatist.com/happiness/best-sleep-positions
                      [5] http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/multimedia/back-pain/sls-20076817
                      [6] http://greatist.com/grow/ergonomic-tips-sitting
                      [7] https://www.verywell.com/how-to-walk-walking-posture-3432476

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                      Last Updated on November 22, 2021

                      Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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                      Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

                      Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

                      During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

                      But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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                      Simplify

                      I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

                      Absolutely.

                      And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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                      If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

                      • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
                      • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
                      • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

                      Be Mindful

                      You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

                      Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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                      Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

                      Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

                      Reflect

                      As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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                      Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

                      But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

                      So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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                      Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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