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Old 03-17-2012, 04:35 PM   #1
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tips for posture problems

Hello folks

Has anyone got any tips or advice on how I can address my rubbish posture issues and do what I can to try and make things morecomfortable and less 24/7 painfull?

I work out and stretch when I can. But I'd like to try and be a bit more proactive if I can. Actually when I think about it it's my sitting posture that needs the most work. Lying down I can figure that one out ok. Standing up, I'm not too bad with that either but with sitting it all falls apart.

thanks heaps

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Old 03-18-2012, 07:25 AM   #2
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Re: tips for posture problems

A fellow sloucher! I am one myself! Knew I wasn't alone . . .

Sitting is the hardest one to maintain proper posture at. Chairs with a comfortable back height are a help. One of the main things I work on is actually pulling my shoulders into to the proper position. Focusing on getting into that habit will help the rest of it come along. I have found that focusing on the shoulders being in the proper position automatically helps the rest of your posture. Give it a try and pay attention to what happens with the rest of your posture.

That's about the only suggestion I have for you. Hope it helps!

 
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Old 03-18-2012, 03:13 PM   #3
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Re: tips for posture problems

Along the same lines, make sure that whatever you are looking at is at the proper position. So, the computer screen should be positioned so that your eye-level is one-third of the way down the screen. Make sure that your keyboard is positioned so that you don't have to reach your arms forward to the keyboard. Same for the mouse! Once you start reaching with your arms, your back curves forward.

To retrain yourself, you could try positioning yourself in such a way that a tennis ball or similar object is held in place while sitting. Once that objects drops, you are alerted that you have started to slouch.

I have a saddle chair which forces me to sit up straight. It is literally like sitting on a horse saddle and almost impossible to slouch. You could try sitting on an exercise ball to strength your core.

 
Old 03-18-2012, 03:29 PM   #4
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Re: tips for posture problems

Hi there

Thanks for your coments. It's more about sitting on the couch, when watching T.V. Supportive chairs where you sit at a table are not really a problem, oh and my computer is a laptop that sits on my knee.

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Old 03-18-2012, 04:13 PM   #5
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Re: tips for posture problems

Laptops are often problematic for posture. You may want to consider getting an external cordless keyboard and positioning your laptop on a table. There are also docking stations that elevate the screen.

For lounging, placing a pillow in the small of your back may help, especially if your sofa is deep. Or, maybe sit Indian-style, which almost forces you to sit upright. Sitting with your legs crossed at the knees is best avoided.

 
Old 03-18-2012, 04:32 PM   #6
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Re: tips for posture problems

Or, best yet (and I know, very unrealistic) do not sit on upholstered furniture where you sink in. Avoid almost all couches as you can't really sit properly, particularly when the hips sink below the level of the knees.

There is a really interesting book on posture and back problems from an anthropological viewpoint by a woman named Esther Gokhale. Maybe your local library carries it. Her studio is in northern CA near Stanford, but she presents seminars around the country. The book is "8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back: Natural Posture Solutions for Pain in the Back, Neck, Shoulder, Hip, Knee, and Foot".

 
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Old 03-18-2012, 04:44 PM   #7
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Re: tips for posture problems

I understand what you're saying and have heard simiar stuff before but not sitting on any kind of chair isn't practical for me. Also I do need lower back support as I have spina-bifida occulta where my lower three vertabrae are 'exposed' due to the spinal colum not being closed at those points. This leaves my lower back more vulnerable and weaker. Thanks for the book suggestion.

 
Old 03-18-2012, 05:26 PM   #8
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Re: tips for posture problems

I have also caught Ms. Gohkale on PBS. After my fusion, I had a dining room chair in my living room with a pillow in the lumbar area for support, rather than sitting on the couch.

 
Old 03-19-2012, 05:55 AM   #9
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Re: tips for posture problems

My husband ruptured L5-S1 almost two decades ago and was able to let it heal without surgical intervention. To this day, he will choose a "dining room" type chair rather than a soft upholstered chair when given an option.

After my first fusion, I couldn't even get down to the couch or back up again -- it was too low. Even though I bought a recliner which was supposed to be good for people with back problems, my PT was not in favor of me using it, so I ended up getting a new ergonomically designed office chair that is very adjustable at all the major points. I end up sitting in it most of the time...but then, none of us should be sitting that much, right?

Like SweetPea mentioned earlier, my physiatrist sat on an exercise ball for his desk chair.

And just to clarify, that book by Esther Gokhale is not a typical back book. I'm not sure how much the average person would adapt from it, but I found it very thought-provoking.

 
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