How to Correct Posture at Work – Tips for a Healthier You
Work Wellness

How to Correct Posture at Work – Tips for a Healthier You

|Aug 18, 2023
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Working at a desk can be a great thing because it’s generally a less fast-paced environment, and you can take frequent breaks. However, it could affect your sitting posture and become a severe problem.

It’s important to understand the proper posture at a desk and use it all the time. However, you may already have poor posture. Are there ways to fix the issue before things get too bad? 

The first step is to learn about the types of posture and find out which one you are. For example, if you typically have a forward head, your shoulders and back are fine, but your neck bends forward. Those with kyphosis have a curve in the upper shoulders and back, which could lead to a more hunchbacked position.

Regardless of your sitting and standing posture type, it’s important to learn how to correct posture now. You’ll have to work at it all the time, but you’ll find that it gets easier as time goes on. 

Let’s learn more about how to fix your posture to avoid problems later in life. 

Common Workplace Habits That Contribute to Poor Posture

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 1.71 billion people worldwide deal with musculoskeletal conditions. This can cause lower back pain and fatigue, especially as it continues to worsen. 

When you’re at work at a desk job, you probably have bad habits and aren’t even sure why. Do you ask yourself: “Why does my spine feel bruised?” It could be from sitting too long or doing things that lead to bad sitting posture. 

Here are the workplace (and other) habits you might be doing that are contributing to bad posture: 

  • Sleeping on a mattress without the right back support
  • Using a pillow to be in a position that compromises your posture
  • Looking down all the time or keeping your head too high
  • Wearing tight clothing and high-heeled shoes
  • Holding the phone between your shoulder and neck
  • Carrying a heavy item on only one side of your body, such as a purse
  • Having a very large inward curve in your lower back (called swayback or lordosis)
  • Slouching and pushing your shoulders forward into a hunched appearance
  • Slumping forward in your office chair
  • Not using a chair that offers lumbar support
  • Sitting forward too much on the seat of your office chair

Common Workplace Habits That Contribute to Poor Posture 

Tips for Breaking Bad Habits and Adopting Healthier Postural Practices

If you want to learn how to fix bad posture, this next section is ideal for you. Here are a few tips to get you started: 

1. Don’t Slouch

When you slouch, you’re putting more stress on your spine, which also strains the joints, muscles, and bones necessary to hold the backbone in place. Though poor sitting and standing posture is bad for the back, it can also smash the organs in your body together, making it harder for the intestines and lungs to work. This could make it difficult to get enough air to breathe or digest food.

1. Don’t Slouch

2. Straighten Up

The best way to prevent posture problems is to stand tall. There should be a natural curve in your spine, and you should suck in your stomach slightly. This will help you look and feel better and slimmer. 

To get a visual idea of what to do, stand against the wall as if you were measuring your height. Make sure your chin is tucked in, and your head is straight. The ears should be right over the middle of the shoulders, and your knees should be straight, shoulders back, and stomach tucked. Neither the hips nor the rear end should stick out.

2. Straighten Up

3. Don’t Slump Over at the Desk

It’s often comfortable to slouch, and you might even want to lean and swivel in your ergonomic chair. However, it’s wise not to do that. Instead, you should sit back completely in the chair. Use the lumbar support if possible, or put a rolled-up towel or cushion behind the mid-back to protect the spine. 

Make sure your knees bend at a right angle and ensure they are the same height as the hips or slightly higher. Likewise, your feet should be flat on the ground.

4. Stop Text Neck

If you’re always on your smartphone, you should be stretching your neck throughout the day. Tilting your head down all the time to check messages will strain your spine severely. Though you might not notice it after a few days, a full year will cause “text neck.” Instead, put your phone up to eye height and move the eyes rather than your head.

4. Stop Text Neck

5. Sit Up in the Car

Are you planning a long road trip or have a long commute? You might lean back in the car’s seat while driving, but that’s bad for your posture. Sit upright without locking your legs. Likewise, you should keep the knees bent slightly and ensure they’re at hip level. 

6. Don’t Wear High Heels

Though high heels are fashionable at work, they aren’t good for your standing posture. Stilettos and pumps push your spine’s base forward, which will cause the back to over-arch. With time, it can change how your backbone lines up, putting more pressure on the nerves and leading to back pain. If you’re someone who enjoys very high shoes, you’ll also put more stress on the knees.

Instead, it’s better to choose a chunky, lower heel for daily use. However, there’s no reason you can’t wear the high heels for a night on the town every once in a while.

6. Don’t Wear High Heels

7. Sleep Well

Whether you like to take naps or sleep for eight full hours, you have to do it correctly. Therefore, you don’t want a sagging or soft mattress. Instead, get a firm one that will hold the natural shape of your spine better.

If you’re a side sleeper, make sure that your knees are bent slightly without hugging them to your chest. It’s also wise to put a decent pillow under your head to keep it in line with your spine.

Those who prefer to sleep on their backs should choose a smaller pillow for under the neck instead of a thicker one.

7. Sleep Well

8. Tone Your Abs and Exercise

If you’ve got more poundage around the stomach, it will stress your back. In fact, strong muscles in the core area will support your spine. Generally, it’s best to choose a workout plan that focuses on cardio, core work, mobility, flexibility, and strength. 

Another option is active sitting. This is where you sit on a fitness ball or ergonomic stool during the day. It’s best to do it at small intervals when you’re starting out so that you don’t overtax your body and core muscles. 

9. Use a Standing Desk

Some people just naturally slouch when they sit. Though you should work to improve that issue, you can also get a temporary fix by using an adjustable desk. After sitting for 15 to 30 minutes, stand and continue working for the same amount of time!

9. Use a Standing Desk

10. Check for Any Problems

You likely know that you slouch, but here’s a quick method to tell. Stand against the wall with the back of your head touching. Move the feet roughly 6 inches from your baseboard. Your rear end should be touching the wall, and there should be approximately 2 inches between your neck and low back. If that’s not the case, use the tips found here to improve your sitting and standing posture. 

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Benefits of Using Standing Desks for Posture Improvement

If you’re focused on posture correction, now is definitely the time to do something about it. Those who work from home will enjoy home office desks that adjust their height. In fact, there are advantages to using a standing desk to improve posture. They include: 

  • More confidence
  • Increased energy
  • Improved digestion
  • Less muscle pain
  • Better joint health
  • Reduced headaches

Benefits of Using Standing Desks for Posture Improvement

The problem with traditional desks is that sitting seems like the more neutral position, but it’s not. If you sit for too long, you’ll put more pressure on the muscles, which results in back and neck pain. In fact, you might slouch over your computer to see what you’re typing or doing, which is even worse. 

  • Prolonged sitting can lead to these problems: 
  • Back pain
  • More pressure on the spinal discs and back muscles
  • Increased stress on your neck, arms, back, and legs
  • Strained spinal discs
  • Overstretched ligaments in the spine from slouching
  • Recurrent neck and back pain
  • Damaged spine over time 

Overall, when you sit for extended periods, you put pressure on the spine and back, which leads to neck, shoulder, and back discomfort. However, if you alternate sitting with standing at an ergonomic adjustable desk, you will find the best postural position. It will become second nature to you, which will relieve the spinal compression.

Standing Desks

Tips on Transitioning Between Sitting and Standing Positions for Posture Correction

If you wish to improve your standing posture, it’s important to learn how to transition from sitting to standing with ease. You already know that sedentary behaviors can be problematic for your health, and an L-shaped standing desk is the ideal solution. 

Now, you must focus on how to do it without wasting much time. Here are a few tips: 

1. Go Slowly

Most people jump from sitting all day to standing all day because they believe it’s better for them. However, that’s unwise. Sitting for those years has probably weakened your muscles. You could be very sore after standing and never want to do it again. 

Instead, you should build your endurance to stand for longer periods. Most healthcare professionals recommend sitting for the same period as you stand during the day. However, you might find it easier to sit longer than stand initially. 

Start off sitting for 10 minutes and then standing for the same amount of time. Gradually build your way up to sitting/standing for 30 minutes.

1. Go Slowly

2. Find the Right Standing Desk

What does your day consist of? Most people are sitting for most of the day, and it’s easy to incorporate standing. For example, if you’re normally typing and answering phones, you’ll need an electronic adjustable desk. With this, you’ll push a button to raise the desk’s height without having to crank it up and waste time. 

When you’re typing and get a phone call, you can press the button on the desk to stand and talk. Everything is still at eye level, so you may check things on the computer without slouching.

2. Find the Right Standing Desk

3. Focus on Ergonomics

Standing up can be beneficial for your health, but you lose efficiency if you don’t consider ergonomics. When standing at your desk, your elbows should still be at a 90-degree angle from the floor. 

It’s also better to use a second monitor with an arm attached, which will help you move it up to eye level. Alternatively, you can use a laptop stand to keep your screen at the right height so that you’re not bending the neck forward or up. 

As you begin standing for longer periods, your feet might get tired or start hurting. A standing mat can be highly beneficial here. Plus, you should be wearing comfortable shoes and checking your standing and sitting posture to ensure it’s still correct. 

Invest in a Standing Desk from Autonomous to Become Healthier at Work

Are you ready to become healthier at work? You’ve learned how to correct posture, which starts with sleeping in the right position. Likewise, it’s better to wear comfortable shoes instead of heels, sit up straight on your way to work (in the car), stop slouching at the desk, and more. 

Standing is a great way to get healthy while at work. Many of the tasks you do while sitting can just as easily happen while standing. Invest in a standing desk from Autonomous to improve your posture and reduce your risk of health problems from a sedentary lifestyle. 

You also learned how to stand up straight and determine your standing and sitting posture type. This information will help you feel the right position, which you can work toward attaining all the time. Though difficult now, it will get easier as time goes on.

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