“Do posture correctors work?” This is a frequent question we receive from our readers at ManagerUp, especially from those considering buying one.
What triggers this interest?Many of our readers are searching for an easy solution to correct bad posture. Many spend the majority of their day sitting at a desk. As so much of our work is technologically driven, we are forced to sit for hours on end, staring at a computer and answering phone calls.
The truth is, we are not suited to remain in one position for a prolonged period of time! The sedentary positions we subject ourselves to almost daily can lead to poor posture. This “bad” posture inevitably results in muscular imbalances, tension, and discomfort. The worst of it is that the pain can be chronic.
Although everyone’s posture is different. Poor posture usually involves some degree of slouching or rounding the shoulders forward. This causes tight chest muscles and weak shoulder/upper back muscles.
Unfortunately, fixing the issue is not simple. We can’t quit our jobs; and for many of us, we cannot stop working at a desk.
Different questions arise: how to stop slouching? How to avoid too much sitting in the office? And of course, can posture correctors make our day-to-day work more comfortable and prevent an manage pain?
In this article we will tell you:
– What a posture corrector is.
– How posture correctors work.
– Are they beneficial?
– Is there scientific evidence behind posture correctors?
With all this knowledge, you can decide if a posture corrector is right for you. But before we answer the question, “do posture correctors work?”, we will now explain what they are.
What Exactly Is a Posture Corrector?
A posture corrector may also be referred to as a posture brace or posture belt. There are many different types of posture correctors on the market but most involve two straps crossed like an “X” that loop around the shoulders, pulling them back.
Some of these posture braces can be adjusted and tightened. They work to sustain forward shoulder positioning and provide support allowing your spine to maintain a straighter, more neutral neck and back.
Now that we know what posture correctors are, how do they work?
How Do Posture Correctors Work?
The purpose of a posture corrector is to align the shoulder and chest muscles. In short, a posture brace is designed to restrict slouching and the hunching down of your shoulders by holding your back into a fixed, straight position.
These postural correctors entail what is called “tissue adaption.” This means that the body becomes accustomed to its current position for a considerable time.
Here is what happens: the chest muscles shorten while those of the back length in the process of adaptation. A brace can modify this reaction by pulling the muscles into a neutral position. You should stop slouching!
It gradually allows you to maintain a straight posture automatically after prolonged use. Some find it uncomfortable at first, but since you will wear it for some time, you will get used to the way it holds you up.
Remember, as your muscles are trained to keep an upright position, they eventually learn to be in this posture without the trainer. You won’t revert to the old stance after your muscles are lengthened.
Do Posture Correctors Work According to Medicine and Science?
Let’s have a look at the benefits of posture correctors and see whether they have been proved by science. Here they are:
1. Improves Alignment
When you have a desk job and spend more than 8 hours there daily, you tend to exhibit a slouched posture with a forward head and rounded shoulders.
Posture correctors help to realign your spine, pulling back your shoulders back and lifting your chest to get proper alignment.
2. Improves Self-esteem
An erect posture is certainly a sign of high self-esteem and confidence. This is the position of many Studies. The results are clear: those who stand or sit with good posture are more likely to experience better concentration and attentiveness. The ensuing confidence builds self-esteem.
3. Pain Management
We all have had some degree of neck pain, no doubt from sitting in poorly-designed chairs at the office. Busy execs can’t even take a moment to relax and stretch.
A posture corrector brace decreases the external, unwanted forces on the body due to incorrect posture, thus relieving neck pain back pain or pain in the shoulders. You get more shoulder and spine support, with a bit of immobilization, to ease discomfort and chronic pain.
Those with neck, shoulder or spine injuries need extra help. You want to reduce movement in these areas. This entails some degree of immobilization to ensure rehabilitation and a speedy recovery. Many don’t realize that posture correctors work wonders on injuries.
5. Improves Mental State and Mood
Numerous studies have found correlations between posture and mood disorders, including depression and anxiety.
Again, try sitting upright as you are reading this; you may feel more ready, in charge, and even more powerful.
In one study, 86% of the participant students reported that it was easier to recall negative memories and emotions when in the slouched forward position. In comparison, 87% found it was easier to access positive memories and emotions when sitting in an erect position.
It is not just about improving bad posture, but also about prevention. If you are concerned, why not take precautions before anything happens. We all want good posture but are often lax about it with our sedentary lifestyle.
The old saying, “an ounce of prevention ….” is quite true. Nip bad posture in the bud before chronic pain becomes your condition.
Those who sit at a computer are the worst culprits. They need posture correctors more than anyone else.
It is not inconvenient for most executives to don a brace for some period during the work day. You will want to do it knowing the many health benefits.
7. Reduces Headaches
If you are a chronic headache sufferer, you may find your headaches improve after using a posture brace, as many are caused by neck tension. In fact, tension headaches are present in approximately 78% of chronic headache sufferers. Improving posture is one of the first suggestions when it comes to the nonpharmacologic treatment of chronic headaches.
Some posture correctors work as biofeedback to the brain by sending signals when the body is about to reach a bad posture, such that the brain alerts the person to revert to a more aligned posture.
9. Fights Lethargy
So many people complain of feeling tired and lazy. It may be due to poor posture. Why feel down about it when you can correct lethargy. The experts know that energy is enhanced from better alignment of the spine, thus impacting productivity.
A posture corrector brace can fix spine alignment, eventually making you less lethargic and more energetic.
10. Better Breathing
It is scientifically proven that a straight back makes breathing easier, as the lungs are less compressed and have more breathing space. The proper posture will improve mood, energy and the intake of oxygen. Oxygen-rich blood is extremely healthy for your muscles, circulation, digestion, and skin.
11. Reduces Stress
Cortisol is produced when the body is in a state of stress. Just by straightening up, you can become more relaxed.
Many readers ask not only “do posture correctors work”, but also when and for how long can they be used.
When Can Posture Correctors Be Used?
In general terms, they can be used any time you show bad posture, feel neck or back pain or if you slouch or have rounded shoulders.
Incorrect posture and alignment create a muscular imbalance that negatively impacts your emotional state, sitting position and ability to live an active lifestyle; and they can cause postural abnormalities like kyphosis, lordosis, scoliosis, a flat back, rounded shoulders, etc.
Thus, posture correctors can be used to treat the following conditions:
– Sports injuries like strains, sprains, shoulder instability, a clavicle fracture, and broken collar bone.
– Bad posture like lordosis, kyphoscoliosis, thoracic kyphosis, hunchback, and a misaligned spine.
– Pain associated with slouching, osteoporosis and collarbone injury.
– Loose ligaments.
How Long Should We Use Posture Correctors?
We have heard this question over and over. People expect an instant result, although it’s not how it works. Improvement doesn’t happen overnight.
Correctors may fix your posture in the moment and make you look taller and more in shape, but your body will revert to its original posture after you remove the brace. Give the process adequate time and you will surely see results.
Let wearing a corrector become your new habit. The time length will, of course, vary from person to person, but the device will eventually strengthen and straighten your spine. On average, users wear it for about 20-25 minutes each day. When not in use, try to maintain good posture.
With the device on, you will experience mild muscle soreness, prompting you to keep good posture and not revert to your old stance. Wearing posture correctors for a few months (at least 4 to 6 weeks) can make a remarkable difference.
So what is the final answer to the question, “do posture correctors work? The answer is yes, posture correctors work and we recommend them. Most are reasonably priced and may, indeed, prove to be a good investment, especially if you spend the majority of your day sitting at a desk.