You can blame your soft bed, or your swivel office chair, or even the long periods of standing you’re forced to do at work. But in the end, it’s about how poor your overall health is due to poor posture.

Is your bad posture the result of a harmless bad habit, or does it amount to something much more? You’ll admit it – the last half of your work day can cause you to slump over your desk when gazing over at the mountain-like pile of paperwork in front of you. You’re tired, your ready to go home and most of all, you’re ready to turn your entire body off, and veg out in from of the TV.  But how does an 8 hour day of slouching and leaning affect your overall health?

Bad posture isn’t just bad for your back, shoulders and spine. It has the potential to create lifelong health risk and problems that can’t always go away as quickly as the stress of your workday will.  Need a straighter stance? Know the downfall of a poor posture and how to make it better– starting today.

The Development of Migraines/Chronic Headaches

Whether you can’t remember the last time you had a headache, or you already suffer with frequent migraines, a poor posture may be the culprit of your next one. Studies have shown that slouching makes you more likely to clench your jaw (awake or asleep) and when that happens, your temporomandibular joint will wear down and cause significant pain as you age.

Reduction of Proper Lung Function

What good is your regimented running schedule to improve your lungs when a poor posture will eliminate your hard work?  If you have a pattern of slouching forward when chatting with your friends during happy hour, curling up in a ball on the couch while watching The Office or while reading the newspaper on a lazy Sunday morning, consider yourself warned. Too much slouching can reduce your lung capacity by as much as 30 percent. Consistent slouching can also result in a decrease of peristaltic function, which is responsible for movements that push the food down from your stomach to your intestines.

Improve Your Posture, Improve Your Health!

If you spend the majority of each weekday sitting, get into the habit of walking around the office every 20 minutes. They will help reinforce a straighter posture and prevent you from engaging in the “lazy” stance – slouching over your computer without realizing you’re even doing it. While standing, make sure to distribute your weight evenly. When you lean, your weight is on your toes, knees and abdomen. But when you stand up straight and tall, your weight is even, which prevents your back and thighs from bearing the burden all alone.  Lastly, be aware of your body! Just by improving your consciousness to the moment (how you’re sitting/standing, what you’re doing, the motions of your body) you can improve your posture. Staying connected with your body is just as important as staying aligned with your mind’s thoughts, and as a result, you’ll eliminate that pesky back pain, improve your energy and feel more confident than you have in a long, long time.