Tom Clark's Blog

Sit Up Straight: The Negative Effects of Slouching

So many of us were told to sit up straight as kids, but many of us weren't offered a reason. Some of us, on the other hand, were told that slouching is disrespectful.
Is there any real reason not to slouch, though, or is it just some arbitrary rule of etiquette that never died out? If you guessed the latter, you would actually be wrong. There are reasons not to slouch that go far beyond what others think of you.
It turns out that slouching can be bad for us, both medically and socially, and we'll talk about why in the paragraphs below.
[b]1. Spinal Issues[/b]
The reason most people slouch is because it feels comfortable. However, what's comfortable now may cause problems down the road.
When we slouch, our head tends to droop forward. Most of the time the weight of our head falls on our back and shoulders. Slouching puts us in a position where this isn't possible.
Instead, the weight now has to fall [url=]onto our necks[/url]. Over time, this stress can cause problems in our upper spine and compression on internal organs leading to everything from pain in our neck and back to constipation, poor circulation, exhaustion and all manner of other issues.
If you're experiencing any of these symptoms, it may be time to see a chiropractor. You can [url=]read more[/url] about that here.
[b]2. Social Issues[/b]
Slouching does more than just hurt our backs. It can also hurt our reputation. It's an often-quoted fact that most of our communication isn't done with our mouths.
Body language goes back to the animal kingdom. Perhaps you've noticed a dog lean down on its front legs before playing with another dog. Maybe you've wondered why your cat alternates pushing its paws into you.
Both of these are examples of body language, and humans use it too. As an experiment, try to look at some of the people you encounter in a day. Notice what your first impression of them is, then try to figure out what gave you that impression.
A lot [url=]goes into language[/url], both spoken and implied. Slouching brings our head and limbs inward towards our chest. This is a gesture left over from eons ago, when getting attacked was a far more constant worry.
Covering our torso means covering our internal organs in case of conflict. It also [url=]makes us smaller[/url] in hopes that we won't be noticed. It's a gesture that shows fear and passiveness.
[b]Slouching: It's More than Just Manners[/b]
The arguments against slouching are a lot more compelling than one might think. There is a social component to it, but slouching on a regular basis can affect your health as well.
Our spines will suffer, and others may come to see us as a pushover. Sitting up straight will make us look more confident and feel healthier. If you want to know more about bone health and body language, we encourage you to do more research on your own.
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