The lifestyle and health implications of poor posture, in particular having meals in front of the TV, can lead to the formation of other bad habits.
Eating away from the dining table is also increasing our “disconnectedness” with one another impacting our mental health. This was reinforced in a 2017 YouGov British study finding that 1 in 3 children consumed their evening meals in front of the TV while 3 in 10 also had their breakfast there, and many families reported this was the only source of “quality time” they spent together. Another study identified that children are becoming less sociable with their eating with age. Further research has shown that prioritising eating at the table where good posture is easier to maintain has a positive impact on children’s values, motivation, personal identity, and self-esteem, stimulating positive role modelling and engagement.
Slouching produces a squashing effect of our internal organs making us appear bigger than someone with a strong upright presence. Even in our use of language, someone who slouches is perceived to be spineless and lacking in vitality, whereas someone who stands or sits proud is seen as having a backbone.
Adopting good posture also has positive effects on our mental health, our own self-belief, personal confidence and our ability to interact cohesively. An American study reported a higher prevalence of depression amongst a group of “slouchers”, while a recent Harvard study showed that even our hormone levels can be influenced when people who adopted powerful postures (open shoulders and straight spines) had a 20% increase in testosterone levels and a 25% decrease in cortisol levels.
Participating in Yoga and Pilates can be a great way to socialise while enjoying exercises to strengthen your core and mid back, which is ideal for good posture and in turn can set you up for long term success.
Your digestion and other organ function will thank you for it.
– Pam Murphy | Naturopath & Remedial Therapist | NLP Practitioner