Recently our lives and lifestyle have been dramatically altered by COVID-19. Lockdown, quarantine, work from home now known to all of us which a year before was abstract to us. Nowadays zoom meetings or sessions are trending instead of conferences.
Working from home drew attention to this coronavirus situation. Whether we work from home or at our designated workplace, working for long hours could cause aches and back pains. While working from home, lack of designated workplace, most of the time we end up lounging wherever we find space, a contribution to our laziness. But continuous practice ends up in a bad posture, harming our spines.
Advantage of good posture
Posture is a position that will hold our body while standing, sitting, and lying. A good posture will help in keeping bones and joints in the correct alignment for proper use of the muscle. It will reduce the tension on the ligaments in the spine. It prevents the abnormal position of the spines. Along with it, it prevents backache, muscle pain, and fatigue.
The disadvantage of bad posture
Poor posture could cause pain in the back, neck, and shoulder. It can cause muscle stiffness, poor circulation, and digestion. It will impair the lungs’ function, constriction of nerves, and headache.
We must give importance to our body postures to avoid different physical health complications. Thus maintaining a good body posture is a priority for welcoming sound mental health. A poor posture can lower our self-esteem and energy levels.
Here are some tips for retaining a good posture
Must sit properly
How long we are sitting and the position is the fundamental matter of concern. Foremost, we should invest in a good quality chair with an adjustable armrest. Ideally, the angle of our elbow to our wrist should be 90 degrees to our body. An adjustable armrest chair will help us sit in a comfortable position. Besides, an ergo-economic chair could be a good option too. The lever of this chair will adjust the height and provide lumbar support. Or we could take a small cushion to place it behind our back, for maintaining our postures.
The feet should be flat on the floor with the leg at an angle of 90 degrees. Our chin should be parallel to the ground, we should not look too far to the computer screen. We could use a resting pad in front of our keyboard for resting our wrist.
Break from work
While working even in a perfect posture for long, we must take a break, standing up, stretching, and moving our body will be imperative. A current research recommendation is to get up every 30 to 40 minutes. And we should practice this break even after joining our workstation. We could walk around our house, pump our muscles, and stretch our bodies. This will improve blood circulation and prevent neck pain or back stiffness.
A standing desk cloud is a great option for work from home. Hence we could arrange our standing desk or could invest in a pre-made standing desk.
However, elongating our neck, spine, and the torso will help us create a good posture while working.
Investing in some accessories
We have mentioned earlier, a wrist pad or a standing desk are some accessories that can help us protect our posture. Apart from these, a yoga ball desk chair, a second monitor, a wireless keyboard, will make it easy to customize our positions, these will engage the core while sitting. A lumbar support pillow or under desk footrests would be a perfect fit. Prolong use of mobile phones could harm our health. Instead, we could use a speaker while working in a quiet space.
While working on a laptop, a laptop stand could be an excellent choice. We can make a laptop stand at home by placing one or two books below the laptop. This will help us maintain our eye angle.
Even the gym was closed during the lockdown days. Doing crunches, push-ups, squats, and leg lifts in the morning will make us feel energetic throughout the day. This will help us stay physically fit. A few chair exercises like muscle stretching during working will prevent neck pain. Some simple exercise or simple yoga for 30 minutes can emphasize our back mobility and strength. A should raise, leg planks, and arm twisting will help in adopting our alternative lifestyle.
Stretching out neck muscle with a head retraction exercise will release muscle tension of our back or neck. It will reduce the stress and tension of joints and ligaments. Some freehand exercises including stretching of fingers, blinking of eyes could do.
Rolling out of the spine with a thoracic foam roll will relax the shoulder and neck muscle and improve circulation and digestion.
Yoga for rejuvenation
We can perform various yoga like Mountain pose or Tadasana, which will keep our body in vertical alignment.
Other yoga like posture, standing forward bend variation which mainly targets the hamstrings, the spinal cord, and the joints of our legs. Practicing this yoga will keep the leg muscle and the spine healthy.
We can perform certain breathing exercises like pursed-lip breathing, diaphragmatic breathing helps to maintain blood flow and circulation. These exercises will improve blood flow and pumping.
The ultimate exercise that can fix any issues related to back pain is the plank pose. This yoga targets the core muscle, glute muscle, and helps them to grow strong. This in the future will aid to maintain a proper posture.
We should refill ourselves with drinks and go to the bathroom. This will reduce the stress and will prevent dehydration. And it will improve our muscle activity and digestion.
Late working could be harmful. People should know when to stop the work when to unplug. A short T.V. or a coffee break for a few minutes will be deserving. An hour off from work is sometimes found productive. A quick nap will increase the concentration of working.
During the brief break from work, one could move outside on the balcony or on the terrace to get some sunlight. According to science journals, sunlight causes Vitamin D synthesis, promotes bone growth, and improves bone density.
Avoiding bed or sofas
Sitting on the bed while working will put more pressure on our lower back. Hence this practice needs to be avoided. Instead, we could go for a good bed table, which will help us maintain our angle.
Prevent sitting crossed leg on the chair
Cross leg sitting in the chair while prolonged working will stress our spine and will cause a C formation. Every day sitting in the same habit can wreck our spine. This will cause various spinal diseases and will deteriorate our posture too.
To maintain a healthy life and to work for the long term, we must take good care of our health. As we are talking about posture, we need to have adequate and balanced muscle flexibility and strength, a normal motion of the joint and spine. Having a good posture can improve our confidence, mood, and overall health.