Your posture can affect your health and well-being. When your joints and bones are correctly aligned, there's minimal stress on your ligaments and your muscles can work to their full potential. According to the American Chiropractic Association, having good posture can help prevent fatigue, muscle strain, degenerative arthritis and joint, muscle and back pain. Monitoring the ways in which you sit and stand, and knowing how to correct your body positioning, can help you develop a healthy posture.
Sit in a chair with your back and tailbone against the backrest.
Divide your weight evenly on your hips -- avoid leaning to one side.
Bend your knees 90 degrees and put your feet flat on the floor with your toes pointing forward. If needed, adjust the height of the chair or place a footstool under your feet so your thighs are parallel to the floor.
Maintain the natural curve in your spine and pull your shoulders slightly back and down. Your hips, shoulders and ears should be aligned.
Bend your elbows 90 degrees and place them on the armrests together with your forearms. If needed, adjust the height of the armrests so your shoulders stay down. Alternatively, place your forearms on a desk positioned directly in front of you.
Position your feet somewhat wider than hip-width apart, point your toes forward and keep your knees slightly bent.
Divide your weight evenly on your feet. The majority of your weight should rest on the balls of your feet.
Maintain the natural curve in your back and slightly suck in your stomach.
Pull your shoulders slightly back and down, and let your arms naturally fall at the sides of your body. Avoid hunching forward or pulling your shoulders too far back and sticking out your stomach.
Check your posture in the mirror to ensure that your ears, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles are aligned.
- Avoid sitting longer than half an hour -- get up from your chair, walk around and perform light stretches.
- If you have trouble maintaining the curve in your spine when sitting down, place a rolled up towel in the curve behind your back.
- Perform core-strengthening exercises twice a week -- a strong core is essential for good posture. Perform exercises such as back extensions and crunches or consider taking on yoga or Pilates.