Here’s 5 ways to correct that…
by Nancy Alexander, PT
- Evaluate your home office and desk:
- Are your feet firmly on the floor?
- Is your keyboard at the right height so that your elbows are bent approximately 90 degrees and your forearms and wrist are flat (not at an angle at the wrist)?
- Is the top of your screen or monitor at eye level when sitting upright?
- How small is the print on your screen? Do you find yourself leaning in to be able to read it? I found myself guilty of this one… Enlarge the print so you don’t have to lean forward and can stay upright in your chair. You’ll find that adjustment in Microsoft Office applications at the bottom right of the screen. It’s a sliding scale with “100%” at the far right. Slide it in that direction. Pretty slick, right?
- Take what I call microbreaks from your sitting/computer work. Time it… say every ½ hour get up and move. Do laps in your home or apartment if you must. Get out of that posture you were in. And use it as a reminder to correct it.
- Practice shoulder blade squeezes. While sitting – or while standing during a microbreak – bring your shoulders back, then relax. Don’t lift them up toward your ears, just back. Start small, especially if you’ve been slouched for a long time (like over an hour). Repeat them up to 5 times and practice them when you think of it. It should feel good to do and help alleviate that burning you feel in the muscles.
- Tuck your chin. While sitting – or while standing – tuck your chin straight back. Don’t bend your head forward, and likewise, don’t tilt it back while doing this. It’s a small movement. But it’s enough to help bring your ears back over your shoulders where they belong.
- Sit with a small pillow at your low back. By supporting your low back, you automatically lift the upper trunk into better posture and that will help get you out of that slouched posture.
Disclaimer: Use your discretion here. If something hurts, don’t do it and consult with your physician as needed.
Be safe. Be well.