3 Ways Your Desk Job is Affecting Your Posture

Overview

Recurring aches and pains are huge red flags that the body has poor mechanics.  Poor posture is not exclusive to the upper body such as shoulders and upper back.  Those are just the most obvious signs to most people.  Poor posture affects the entire body, and the majority of people are totally unaware.  In this article, I will be discussing how the average job can have severe effects on your body:

1) Hips

2) Neck and shoulders

3) Knee pain

It's all connected...

Below shows optimal alignment where muscles are used properly, and chances of injury or pain are greatly reduced.  If a muscle in the foot is tight, this can cause dysfunction in the calf muscles --> which leads to misalignment in the knee --> which causes dysfunction in the hips --> which is the engine for the whole body.

 

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting PosturePoor Hip Functionality will Result in Poor Posture

 

1) Hips don't lie

Above shows how weak muscles around the hips (due to sitting for long periods of time) can cause the hips to shift forward, resulting in the stomach area and upper leg area to shift forward as well.  Glutes and hamstrings are weakened and also upper back rounding and forward head posture is a result. 

 

Are your hips fully functional?

Everyone is able to do the full squat as a baby, but through non-use, the ability is lost to most people.  Most people will need to squat and lift their heels off the floor to compensate for lack of hip function. 

The full squat is a comfortable position that can be held for hours for those that are able to do it properly.

 

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting PostureImage result for asian squat3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

2) Neck and Shoulders (Kyphosis)

Getting aches and pain are just a normal part of aging, right?  

 

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

 

WRONG.  

Just because it’s common doesn’t mean it is necessary. Sitting in front of a desk and typing on a keyboard and closely looking at a monitor is something that is completely new in human history. 
Next time you go to work and take a look around at how everybody is sitting.  It is no surprise that many experience aches and pains, yet it is completely avoidable if they had the proper knowledge of how to work while practicing proper posture.
 
3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

I know a number of teenagers (I’m a teacher if that makes it sounds better) that are already experiencing knee pain or saying that they have sciatica.

A 14-year old student was complaining that his elbow hurts when he bench presses at the gym.  I showed him a stretch for his arm, and his arm felt better immediately.  A week later, his pain was completely gone. It took me 60 seconds to show him a stretch that may have saved him 60 years of recurring and limiting pain.

 

3) Knee pain

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

 

How does sitting cause knee pain?

The answer is because everything is connected.  Tight hips from sitting, leads to dysfunction in those muscles in the hip.  It is like a domino effect, because now the knee is taking on more weight that is normally meant to be carried by the much larger, stronger muscles in the hips and glutes. 

Imagine it sort of like a seesaw.  With proper alignment throughout the whole body, the load placed on the knees requires little effort.  Improper alignment caused by dysfunction in hips or feet, will be the equivalent of shifting the pivot point in the image below to the right causing much more strain on the knees.

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

 

Check yourself before you wreck yourself

Ideally, when lunging forward or bending slightly, the feet, knees, hips, and torso should all aligned.  Poor muscle function in the foot, ankle, hip, or all of the above is the reason why so many have issues with knee pain. Half of my colleagues at work have problems with it.  One just had to get extensive surgery, another is going through physical therapy, and another one is limping around on a cane hoping it will get better.

3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture3 Ways Your Desk Job Is Affecting Posture

Much like eating healthy, keeping your body highly functional is an ongoing effort that is needed in order to make sure you're not suffering from pain in your later years or present years. That’s why practices like yoga are so popular because they teach people how to gain function of their bodies.   Waiting for the pain to occur to begin taking care of your body is similar to waiting for a heart attack to begin eating healthy.  Physical well-being increases the quality of life across the board.  Fancy equipment is not necessary to make huge improvements. Future posts will discuss how these improvements can be made.

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