Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Check Your Posture to Decrease Pain

I know we have all heard it a million times or more, but I would really like to reiterate how crucial correct posture is for optimal musculoskeletal health. This is even more important in jobs that require a great deal of time spent in static positions such as sitting. I would say that approximately 50% of the patients I see on a daily basis are having pain related to prolonged sitting while working at their computers! The question I always get is "I've been doing this job for a long time, so why would I have pain now?" My answer always relates to the "smart line" phenomenon, which basically states that each of us as unique individuals has a unique perception of how much and what kind of stimulus can be tolerated before the nervous system tells us that pain is occurring. For one person, sitting in a dysfunctional position for 4 hours my cause pain, whereas, another individual may be able to tolerate the same position for years before experiencing pain. Either way, most people will experience pain at some point and all will suffer from increased levels of tissue degeneration as compared to their more ergonomically correct counterparts if behavioral adjustments are not implemented.

Use this diagram as a guide to making your workstation more ergonomically friendly, which will reduce dysfunction and the pain that often follows.

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