Your back is a regular nuisance. You go to the chiropractor for the pain, but it always comes back within a few weeks. It might have something to do with the fact that you slouch a lot at your regular desk job.
You try to get up when you can, even if it’s only to take a trip to the water fountain. It doesn’t seem to be enough. We’re here to tell you that it is.
You only need to learn how to walk properly. Beating the bad posture habits that you’ve learned from leaning over a computer can be difficult.
We can help you become aware of your posture problems so you can fix them. Check out this guide for a few walking tips to live by.
Benefits of Good Posture
Before we start talking about walking better, let’s go over the benefits of improving your posture. What do you have to gain from going through the trouble of correcting things?
Standing with a slouch can put a lot of strain on your lower back. After a while, you end up in so much pain that even a chiropractor will have issues trying to fix it.
By improving your posture and standing up straight, you take a lot of the pressure off. Your back isn’t the only body part that suffers when you slouch. Your entire spine gets thrown into misery.
This can cause some serious neck issues and frequent migraines. Your muscles can’t even work the way that they’re supposed to when you have bad posture. It’s enough to send your energy levels plummeting.
Believe it or not, when you slouch, you’re compressing your poor lungs. Give them some room to breathe by standing up straight.
It’s not only your lungs that you’re putting pressure on. Bad posture does a number on a lot of your vital organs. That includes the ones involved with circulation and digestion.
The first rule of walking better is to lift your chin and lookup. You see, when your head is pointed down, your entire spine follows it to some degree.
That means when you’re looking at your feet, you’re putting a strain on your back. You’re also more likely to bump into something, which can cause a different problem.
Try to focus on what’s in front of you. Many people imagine an invisible string that’s connected to their head and preventing them from looking down.
For some, the easiest solution is to not have their phone out while they’re walking. If you get a text message, make a mental note to look at it later. If you’re walking for exercise’s sake, find a different way to track your steps and vitals.
Try Not to Lean
Again, whatever you do, try to stand up straight. Leaning hurts your spine and muscles. There is only one exception to this crucial rule.
If you’re walking downhill, you’re allowed to lean forward a bit. Doing so will allow you to keep your back straight as you go along the trail.
Make sure that you don’t lean too far forward, though. If you do, you could end up falling flat on your face. Vice versa if you’re walking uphill.
Position Your Shoulders the Right Way
Walking straight isn’t going to help you munch if your shoulders are hunched. It can hurt the joints and muscles in your neck and back.
The solution is to shrug your shoulders. Let them fall back into a comfortable position. Not only will this allow you to find the proper positioning for your shoulders, but it will help relieve some tension there as well.
We will say that as you walk, your shoulders may naturally go back up toward your ears without you even realizing it. That’s why it’s recommended to shrug often to reset yourself.
Practice Proper Arm Motion
Swinging your arms as you walk can help you burn more calories. Walking with your hands in your pockets can slow you down and it takes all the challenge out of the exercise.
When you see people using their arms in movies and TV shows, it’s always exaggerated. It’s a harmful representation considering that it won’t help you.
You should close your hands into fists, but don’t clinch them. That will negatively impact your blood pressure. Keep your elbows bent at a 90-degree angle.
You want to keep your elbows close to your body, but not so close that you’re doing the chicken dance. When you bring your hand up, it shouldn’t go past your breast bone.
If keeping your arms up becomes tiring after a while, you can drop them down by your sides. Don’t let them sit motionless, however. You still want to swing them a little.
Try Not to Land So Heavy
Walking is a low-impact exercise that only puts a small toll on you. It does enough to put positive stress on your body. The kind that helps you adapt and get stronger.
The only time it stops being positive stress is when you slam your feet down on the concrete. Landing that heavy will do harm to the muscles and tissues throughout your entire body.
You want to place your foot softly on the ground, rolling from heel to toe. Doing so will help absorb a lot of the impact that comes from walking.
Do Regular Check-Ins
As you walk, it’s easy to slip back into your old posture habits. You’re so used to them that they’re second nature to you at this point.
Whenever you stop at a crosswalk, do a quick posture check. If you find that you’ve started to slump a bit, correct yourself and move on.
Engage Your Core
Your core is important for maintaining posture and proper balance. So, the worst mistake you can make is to not get it involved with your walk.
Practicing poor posture while not engaging your core increases your chances of developing lasting injuries. While you’re walking, pull your belly button in toward your spine.
The trick is doing this without sucking in. You want to let your abs do all the work. It’s going to feel awkward at first, but you’ll get the hang of it.
Dr Steven Lockstone is one of the most experienced chiropractors in Sydney. Do consult with him regarding any injuries.
Choose the Right Shoes
You wouldn’t think that the shoes you’re wearing would make much of a difference, but they do. Having a comfortable pair of sneakers will make you more willing to walk long distances.
They can also provide stability and make it easier for you to keep your feet in the proper position while you make your way along your walking trail.
They can provide a cushion to take away some of the impacts that happen when you place your heel on the ground.
All you have to do is let the person at the counter know that you need a good pair of walking shoes. They’ll be able to point you in the right direction.
When you’re walking for exercise or you’re trying to make it to the office on time, you’ll be tempted to take huge strides to speed yourself up. It will do the trick, but it will put a strain on your ankles, hips, and joints. It can cause injuries if you aren’t careful.
You can power walk without throwing your entire leg out in front of you. Move the same way you would normally, only faster. Your poor leg joints will thank you.
Keep Your Pelvis in a Neutral Position
The last walking tip we have for you is to keep your pelvis in a neutral position. Your hips shouldn’t tilt forward or back as you walk. If you’re arching your back, you’re not walking the right way.
Take a minute to poke your butt out as far as you comfortably can. After you do that, tuck it in. Performing this quick exercise will help you find a happy middle ground between the two extremes.
How to Walk Properly and Keep Back Pain Away
While doing the above-mentioned things can help you walk upright, there are other areas that you should also be focussing on. For example, it might be the case that you are not able to walk straight because of an underlying orthopedic problem. This is why you need to get yourself checked by a specialist to ensure that there aren’t any such issues. To know more in this regard, please view website.
As you can see, if you don’t learn how to walk properly, it can do a number on your entire body. Bad posture puts a strain on your bones, joints, and organs.
Doing something as simple as engaging with your core as you walk or changing up the width of your strides can leave you with way less back pain. Talk about an easy way to save money on a chiropractor.
For more tips that will help you take some stress off your poor bones and joints, visit the Health section of our blog.