Common posture problems solved by ergonomics expert

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Have you developed a new ache and can't quite pin down the cause? It could be down to your posture. To help, Posturite spoke to its lead ergonomic consultant Katharine Metters for some tips.

1. Seating Posture

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"Short periods of slouching aren’t bad for you and is unlikely to cause discomfort."

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    "However, if people slouch for prolonged periods this lack of support in a poor position will put strain on the muscles, ligaments, discs or other structures leading to damage which will cause pain."

    How to fix it:

    "Get into a habit of adjusting your workstation and chair so you are supported in a good posture," Katharine suggests.

    "By good posture, I mean have your feet supported either flat on the floor or on a foot rest – don’t cross your legs and definitely don’t sit on your legs on a seat."

    2. Poor Standing Posture

    "When you stand up, your shoulders should be under your ears and your chest open with a slight inward curve in your lower back," Katharine says.

    "A flat back means that your pelvis is rotated back and your lower back, which should be naturally curved, is actually flat."

    "Often this can be that your trunk muscles are out of balance and your abdominal muscles are stronger than your back muscles. Not standing correctly could put you at risk of discomfort and struggling to stand for a long periods of time."

    How to fix it:

    "Try to tip your pelvis forward to increase your curve,"

    "If you know you stand with a very curved back, try to tighten your tummy muscles and tip your pelvis back to reduce your back curve."

    "You need to restore the muscle balance of your trunk, usually through abdominal exercises."

    3. Leg Leaning

    "When you’re standing upright, it’s not uncommon for people to balance all of their weight on one leg, rather than spread across both."

    "Instead of using your core muscles for this, you instead use your back and hip, placing pressure on just one side."

    "This may lead to you developing muscle imbalances around the pelvis area, causing muscular strain in the lower back and bottom."

    How to fix it:

    "When you stand, make a conscious effort to stand evenly on both of your feet, so that the weight is evenly distributed."

    "Exercises to strengthen your buttocks and core muscles will also help over time."

    4. Tech Neck

    "Using a mobile phone can cause similar problems to when you hunch over a computer."

    "People also often hold the phone up causing arm fatigue and your head may lean forward which can lead to poor posture, putting strain on your neck."

    How to fix it:

    "Think about how to use your phone. Using headphones can be helpful and consider calling people rather than texting."