Smart Woman: Posture Awareness to Avoid Neck and Back Pain

Published 03/25 2014 07:31PM

Updated 03/25 2014 07:42PM

"Stand up straight!" "Sit up!"

It sounds like nagging, but it's actually healthful advice.

"Good posture is aligning your joints and your body in a way that puts the least strain on your muscles," says Dr. Sodiq.

But Dr. Diana Sodiq says we often have bad posture. The biggest mistakes made while sitting are jutting the head forward, slumping the shoulders, crossing the legs, and leaning  to one side, especially when driving. 

Dr. Sodiq says, "If you have bad posture over time, you can. Have neck pain, headaches. Upper back pain. Low back pain and overuse injuries."

You can actively work to improve your posture and to sit properly.

"Her feet are flat on the floor. Her hips are all the way back against the chair, her back is all against the chair, and then her head is neutral," explains Dr. Sodiq, as she shows how to sit properly.

To check your standing posture, try the wall test.

Stand about two inches away from a wall. If you have good posture, your shoulders, head, and buttocks should all touch the wall with enough space to slide one hand behind your lower back.

Sitting or standing, here's a tip for good posture:

Imagine a string pulling from your head to the ceiling. 

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