Reviewed by Dr Andre Budihardjo, MM
5 Body Posture Mistakes That You’re Probably Guilty of Making
Published | 6 min read
Bad body posture is what happens when your spine is put in awkward positions when sitting or standing. You may be putting pressure on your back and hips if you aren’t using the correct posture and it could have long-term effects on your body.
Bad body posture is what happens when your spine is put in awkward positions that curve it. Our daily life is spent doing things that inadvertently cause bad posture such as sitting all day at a desk or looking down at your phone or computer. Even when resting,
Human Spine and Body Posture
The human spine is composed of four physiological curvatures – cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and sacral. A healthy spine should maintain its gentle curves and appears in a straight line when viewed from the back. However, deformities in the spinal alignment can occur due to ageing, injuries, or even growth abnormalities.
When your physiological curvature changes, it can cause body posture problems such as muscle stiffness and discomfort or joint pain.
Body Posture Mistakes and How to Correct It
Poor body posture can lead to muscle pain, spinal dysfunction, headaches and breathing difficulties. Let’s look at the most common bad posture habits we tend to make and how to prevent them.
1. Crossing your legs
This seemingly comfortable sitting posture increases the pressure on the legs, causing the spine and
In addition, cross-legged legs will also cause poor blood flow in the lower limbs and varicose veins in the legs.
2. Straining your neck when using your phone or computer
Small changes to your office routine can help reduce tech neck. Raise the level of your monitor and phone. The closer to eye level, the better.
3. Bending over to lift heavy objects
Because the centre of gravity of the object is far away from the axis of the trunk, carrying heavy objects will increase the burden on the muscles and ligaments of the lower back and cause injury. In fact, bending over to pick up or lift heavy objects with straight knees can cause severe back pain or injury.
When lifting a heavy object, first move your body as close as possible to the object and squat. Hold the object with both hands with your knees bent and lift. Rely on the flexing of your buttocks and thigh muscles to avoid excessive force on lower back muscles so damage can be avoided.
4. Awkward sleeping positions
One bad sleeping habit is taking a nap at your desk. It causes numbness and tingling in the upper limbs due to the pressure on the arms by the head, which affects blood circulation and
If you’ve fallen asleep watching television, you’d know how uncomfortable it feels for your neck and back. Sleeping upright makes it difficult to change positions while you sleep and puts a strain on your body.
Try sleeping on your side, which is the position that is least likely to cause back pain. It is also the most common position. If you like to curl up in the foetal position, try to stretch out more laterally to prevent the spine from curving and causing back pain. Sleeping on your side also helps with ailments such as acid reflux and sleep apnoea. If you have lower back pain, sleep with a pillow or blanket between your knees.
5. Lying on a sofa for extended periods of time
How to Deal with Pain from Poor Body Posture
Bad body posture can cause many problems,
Try paying attention to the way you’re sitting. Keep your screen as close to eye level as possible when working on a computer or texting. Adjust your sleep position to encourage better rest.
If you’re still f
This is an adaptation of an article, “生活中常见的5种不良姿势，你做了哪几样?” which first appeared on HEALTH123 website.
- The Physio Company. 2014. Symptoms, Causes and Treatment of Bad Posture. [Accessed on June 27, 2022]
- GoodRx Health. 2021. This One Trick for Better Posture May Ease Back Pain in Women. [Accessed on June 28, 2022]
- Spine-Health. 2018. Text Neck Treatment and Prevention. [Accessed on June 28, 2022]
- Sleep Foundation. 2022. Best Sleeping Positions. [Accessed on June 27, 2022]
- Better by Today. 2019. 11 posture mistakes you’re probably making — and how to fix them. [Accessed June 28, 2022]
- Taylor & Francis. 2016. Impact of rest-break interventions on the neck and shoulder posture of symptomatic VDU operators during prolonged computer work. [Accessed July 11, 2022]
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