Tips for Maintaining a Good Posture While Driving & Sleeping

This article is the first of a 3-part series about maintaining good posture.

The first tip for maintaining good posture as you go about your day: don’t slouch! When you slouch you put 255% more pressure on the discs in your back. Sit up straight on your “sit-bones,” head over your body, shoulders back…if this feels uncomfortable, then that’s a problem and you need to let your chiropractor know.

 

Tips for Maintaining Good Posture While Driving:

    • The back of your seat should not be at any more than a 5-10 degree angle.
    • Have your seat forward enough so that you don’t have to twist your pelvis for your foot to reach the pedals. 
    • If you feel that either of these two things put you too close to the steering wheel, then telescope your steering wheel forward towards the dashboard.
    • Use your lumbar support. It’s there for a reason.
    • Set your rear-view mirror at a height where you HAVE TO sit up straight to see out of it.
    • Your head should be touching the head support behind it.
    • Do not lean to one side…you are not in a rap video. 
    • Ladies: do not drive with your hair in a ponytail…this puts your neck in a forward head posture.
    • Men: do not drive with your wallet in your pocket…this makes your pelvis and sacrum unlevel causing your lumbar spine to compensate.

Tips for Maintaining Good Posture While Sleeping:

    • The average person sleeps ⅓ of their life, so your posture while you’re sleeping is just as important as when you’re awake. 
    • The average mattress should last you 8-9 years. Is yours older? It might be time to replace it. Firmness and brand recommendations are based on personal preference. Unfortunately, we have yet to find a mattress we love that we can recommend. 
    • Stay off your stomach! This is the worst position for your spine. It is impossible to sleep on your stomach without twisting your neck all night (or else your face would be in the pillow and you’d suffocate!).
    • Sleeping on your back is preferred. 
      • Only ONE pillow is allowed under your neck. Or no pillow! Preferred is a pillow with support for your neck curve. Ask us about the extremely reasonably priced pillows available in our office.
      • If you have lower back problems, putting a pillow under your knees can alleviate lower back pressure.
    • Sleeping on your side is ok too!
      • Again, only ONE pillow under your head is allowed. The thickness of this pillow depends on how broad your shoulders are. The broader the shoulders, the thicker the pillow you need. Lay on your side with your head on your pillow and have someone look at you from behind…your neck and back should be in a straight line with each other.
      • Keep your knees stacked (i.e. don’t hike up one leg) and consider putting a thin pillow between your knees. 

 

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