Why does posture really matter?
We know we are supposed to have better posture. Our parents and our chiropractors kept telling us to stand up straight and pull our shoulders back. But most of us don’t understand just how important that proper posture is. Sadly, some of us consider 5 minutes of proper posture at the dinner table restitution for the rest of the day’s neglect. Even children of chiropractors have be reminded of proper posture (yes, Emma, I mean you.)
Kinetic Chain Fault
The various joints of the body are not disconnected and independent. There are stabilizing factors that occur throughout the body. This is taught to anyone participating in upper body sports. Ask any golf pro where the swing starts? Your answer will be “with the feet.” Even though the club and swing occur in the arms, the foundation is in the proper stance and foot posture. The stabilization of the weight-bearing joints affects the body’s mechanics. Watch basketball players shoot free-throws; they will shift their feet several times in order to get into proper posture and balance. This interconnected movement is known as the kinetic chain.
Kinetic chain faults occur when the body posture is out of balance. Dis-coordinate movements will adversely impact the fine motor control and can lead to injury. This is not just a chiropractic principle. This is taught as part of exercise physiology.
In addition to injury and scar tissue proliferation, poor posture can lead to boney adaptation. When young people are moving through their teen years, their bones are always being sculpted and remodeled. The process takes years to complete. Chronic poor posture encourages the bones take on incorrect shapes and poor adaptations. This leads to arthritis in chronic pain.
Muscles are designed to pull, or contract. They have a “sweet spot” in their muscle length-tension relationship. This “sweet spot” allows the muscle to have neuromusclular efficiency. A muscle which is over-stretched does not have as much pull-strength as a muscle which is under normal load and tone. Chronic poor posture leaves muscles under constant stretch. This weakens the muscles, leading to injury, strains, and acute pain.
Look at the side-ways neck x-rays. Which would you rather have? The neck on the left is showing poor posture, leading to headaches and chronic neck pain. The neck on the right has better posture and better neuromuscular efficiency.
You should visit with an expert St George Chiropractor in order to better understand your posture defects and what you need to do to correct yourself. Taking time now to fix the posture will save time, and money.
Dr. Andrew White
St George Posture Chiropractor