Posted on April 02, 2015 by Kate Halsall
Is your knee playing up for no apparent reason? Do you have a little niggle in your shoulder that you can’t get rid of? Does your back ache after periods of sitting, standing or walking? Have you reached your maximum lift weight and can’t seem to push past it? Did you used to get told off for slouching? If the answer is yes to any of these, then you should also be asking why haven’t you had a postural assessment?
Proper posture not only contributes to your already great appearance, but also helps muscles to function properly, decreases abnormal wear of joints, and can help to prevent backaches and muscular pain. The good news is that by changing a few things at a time you can improve your posture.
One thing we notice as personal trainers, is that most people don’t realise that actually exercise can also have a negative effect on our posture. For example, if our technique is slightly off and we’re not performing the exercise correctly, or if we already have bad posture and are over working those affected areas – it can make things a lot worse.
The strange thing, is that a postural assessment can take as little as 10-15 minutes to do! 10-15 minutes out of your day which could identify muscle dysfunction and therefore corrective exercises which could stop those aches and niggles or get you past that personal best lift. It’s a no brainer. And best of all, there are so many different types of postural assessments – they can be specific to you. For example, it may be the case that you’ve already had some sort of posture assessment: having your gait analysis done to help with running, or a DSE (Display Screen Equipment) assessment at work, or range of movement tests before you get a massage or treatment.
If you’ve never thought about having an assessment done, or believe that you don’t need one; I want to refer to a survey done this year by the National Posture Institute (NPI) into Posture, Health, and Fitness. Their research showed that postural assessments were being performed on clients/patients that range from ages as young as 5 (five) to 80+ years old. These clients/patients include children/adolescents, stay at home parents, corporate executives, office workers, athletes, academics and health/medical professionals. The most prevalent postural deviations are “forward head posture,” “rounded shoulders,” and “muscular imbalances”. The most common injury sites are the “lower back,” “rotator cuff,” and the “knees”.
If you fit into any of these categories, I would suggest you re-think your posture and consider booking a postural assessment.