Seated Posture: Proper Alignment to Avoid Neck and Back Pain

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Reduce Neck and Back Pain when Sitting

Learn how to sit with good posture and proper spinal alignment. (watch the video)

Stop Slouching! No Hunchbacks Please.

Try not to slouch. Keep your head over your hips. Be KIND to your SPINE.

Slouching or sitting in a hunched position can permanently alter your posture. If your job or schoolwork involves long hours of sitting, then your muscles and joints can get stiff, weak or imbalanced, causing you to have neck pain and back pain from your poor posture.

Nearly 80% of Americans experience some form of back pain at least occasionally. Roughly 54% of lower back pain cases in America involve individuals who spend the majority of their day sitting (improperly) at a desk.

Kids and adults:   Be KIND to your SPINE!

How to Sit with Good Posture

good posture at work

Wait, Don’t Sit Up Straight?

Maintain the natural curves in your Neck, Upper and Lower Back.

Sitting with good posture means more than “sitting up straight.” There are natural curves in your neck, upper back and lower back. The goal is to maintain neutral spinal alignment which means that you should have some curvature in your spine and NOT have a COMPLETELY STRAIGHT back.

While it takes time to build up enough strength to sit with good posture for long periods of time, it’s important to start working on it now. Check in with your posture hourly. Expect to find yourself slouching throughout the day and use this as an opportunity to correct your posture. Be kind to yourself and know that this habit takes a while to form. Over time, your muscles will get stronger, and your nervous system will “remember” how to sit with good posture.

Tips for Sitting with Good Spinal Alignment.

  • Place your upper and lower back (below your belt line) against the backrest.
  • If back support is not available, sit upright at the edge of your chair.
  • Stack your head and shoulders over your hips/pelvis.
  • Adjust your chair height so your knees and hips are at a 90-degree angle (knees & hips level).
  • Keep your feet flat on the ground.
  • Place your monitor directly in front of you and at eye level.
  • Keep your shoulders relaxed by resting your elbows and arms on your desk or on your chair, and sit up tall, tightening your abdominals slightly.

  • It may help to invest in an adequate back support which helps achieve good posture by filling in the gap between your lower back and the seat, supporting the natural inward curve of the lower back. Follow this link to see our pdf with photos of proper seated posture.

    REMEMBER: Proper Seated Posture looks like standing posture from your head to your waist. The goal is neutral spinal alignment (maintain your natural curves).

    The Trouble with Laptops

    His monitor should be at eye level.

    Since most laptops have a fixed monitor and keyboard, it is difficult to have your monitor height at eye level when typing. Ideally, your monitor would be placed higher than most laptops allow to type comfortably. Even when working at a standing desk, either your hands have to type like you’re a TRex or your monitor height will be too low.

    If you aren’t able to use a desktop computer, tilt your monitor so you avoid dropping your head and neck down. Otherwise, this can be very harmful on your neck.

    Why Good Posture is Important.

    Posture defines our body’s position and alignment as we stand, sit, or lie down. Gravity pulls down on our bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles, especially as we become more active. Protect your spine!

    To prevent putting our bodies under so much stress, good posture corrects the alignment of our structure. This allows for proper distribution of the force of gravity through our body. We become more efficient and move with less effort.

    Check out our posture infographic and read our blog on the 6 Best Ways to Improve Posture in Your Everyday Life.

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