How to keep your back healthy….some simple steps!

spineSo what does good posture look like?

Most people who come to me for treatment immediately apologise for their ‘poor ‘ posture ,and try to sit up ram rod straight..!

This is what is perceived by many as ‘ good’ posture- shoulders back,tummy in bottom tucked under.

All this actually achieves is to flatten out all the natural Anterior-posterior curves of the spine.

Our curves develop from the very beginning of our development,the mid back (thoracic) curve is foetal formed from being curled round in -utero and shouuld be maintained. The neck (cervical) starts to develop once baby starts to lift their head…and this encouraged by parents giving them precious ‘tummy time’. The last curve to develop is the lower back(lumbar) curve which comes with standing and walking.principles-of-good-posture-different-postures

Viewing the spine from the side these curves together make an S shape or ‘spring’, and as you can imagine this spring helps the spine to absorb pressure from above and below. If these curves become relatively flattened out we develop areas of strain  and thus pain,principally at the junctions of where these curve changes should happen, so lower lumbar, top os shoulder girdle and base of skull and neck!

Children have natural good posture can squat with ease on flat feet and move in a well balanced way, we should aim to move more like them, naturally, equal weight on both feet.  Try to avoid using our body in a unilateral way, and where this is impossible ensure that we walk enough to try to giggle out some of these patterns that build up through the day! I firmly believe that a sedentary lifestyle and a lack of walking causes most incideous  back problems. Walking ,swimming and cycling(to a lesser ) are all examples of good activities that help normalise /equalise body function.  A classic example is golfers who are putting an extreme twist through their spine….always in the same direction…most exteamly on Teeing off. Some of this movement is countered by the walking between shots, but if they are just hitting balls at the practice range then a lot of force is brought to bare on their spine…not the thing to do if they already have a niggle!

roll down

Another things that can help maintain a healthy spine is stretching, this can be done with yoga or pilates or combining the two, both these disciplines adopt spine articulation in the exercises ‘roll like a ball’  ( again children do this with ease but adults tend to find this harder, but with practice better mobility can be achieved. )Roll down and pelvic /clock rolls.

Tags: , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply