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Posts Tagged ‘spine’

spine, back pain, backpack safety, chiropractor, injuriesOnce your kids are back in school with those nice shiny new backpacks, you want to make sure that you keep their spines healthy and happy all year long.  You may want to get them the latest model but to make sure it is the right one, keep these tips in mind:

  • It is lightweight and fits snugly against their body
  • It’s made of vinyl or canvas
  • Its two straps are wide and padded

Now that you have picked a good quality backpack, you want to ensure you pack it correctly. When packing it with school things follow these tips:

  • Place the heaviest items as close to the back as possible so they are close to their body
  • Do not pack bumpy and odd-shaped items against the body
  • Be sure that the weight of their backpack is less than 10% of their body weight. So, if your child weighs 100 pounds, the backpack should weigh no more than 10 pounds

Now that you’ve made sure their backpack is of a good quality and packed correctly, we want to make sure they are sitting correctly as they spend those long hours and days in the classroom. You’ve probably told your child to sit up straight many, many times. Well, the same thing applies in the classroom.

Slumping over the desk can put too much strain on kids’ necks, upper spine, and backs. This especially applies to kids who spend a lot of time on their smart devices, hunching over in an unhealthy posture. When children use these devices, they tend to tilt their heads and move their shoulders forward into a rounded position, which can lead to neck, upper back, shoulder, and arm pain.

Here are some tips for good sitting posture:

  • Keep feet flat on the floor
  • Hold shoulders in a relaxed position
  • Sit with back up against the back of their chair
  •  Ears should be kept over their shoulders and chin just slightly tucked
  • Hold any books at eye level

Even young children can experience the effects of poor posture and back pain, so it’s never too early for young children to learn lessons of good posture.

Our experienced chiropractic team at Synergy Sports Wellness Institute™ is here to help your entire family maintain healthy spines. If you have any questions or concerns, call Synergy Sports Wellness Institute™ at 404-352-8900 to schedule an appointment. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more updates about maintaining peak health and wellness.

At the Synergy Sports Wellness Institute™ we have a great deal of experience treating a wide variety of common sports injuries, but we also know that health-related issues can affect those who lead more sedentary lifestyles as well.  We know that the human body functions most efficiently when it is standing upright with its weight evenly distributed between the feet and the hips balanced directly under the spine.  Unfortunately, most people today spend the majority of their days sitting behind a desk.  This time spent in a seated posture can cause a number of problems across the entire musculoskeletal system and may result in chronic pain or discomfort.  In fact, according to a 2017 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, greater total time spent sitting is actually associated with a higher overall risk of premature death.

Prolonged Sitting Can Cause a Variety of Health Issues

When a person is seated, the pelvis, spine, shoulders, legs, and feet are no longer directly engaged in maintaining the body’s posture.  The muscles of the hips and spine do not have an opportunity to stretch and extend.  Eventually, those muscles become shortened and compressed to the point that secondary muscles are required to initiate standing movements.  This can, in turn, lead to overuse of those secondary muscles, potentially leading to back, hip, knee and foot pain.  Since the feet do not have to bear the weight of the body or deal with ground reaction forces when the body is seated, their system of arches slowly weakens.  The feet can become less able to accept the body’s weight upon standing, causing fallen arches that may require orthotics to correct.

Long periods of time in a seated posture can cause upper body problems as well.  When a person is working in front of a computer or driving a car, for example, the arms and hands are engaged in front of the torso.  This causes the shoulders to round forward and the spine to flex, restricting the movement of the muscles and connective tissue in the torso.  This can potentially result in shoulder injuries, like damage to the rotator cuff or shoulder impingement.  The neck and head must also adjust by arching upward, which can lead to further imbalances, pain and dysfunction.

Moreover, lack of movement can be particularly damaging to the spine.  The disks of cartilage that act as shock absorbers between the individual vertebrae that make up the spinal column do not have an independent blood supply.  Instead, they work like sponges, absorbing and expelling blood as they move.  While sitting, the sustained contraction of the muscles that extend the spine reduces the nutrition that reaches the disks and increases the pressure between the disks themselves.  This may lead to a herniated disk or chronic lower back pain.

Fortunately, no matter what your age or activity level might be, the expert chiropractors and massage therapists at Synergy Sports Wellness Institute are here to help.  If you feel as though you may be suffering because of the time that you spend seated, or If you would like to learn more about the many other services that we offer, please give us a call to schedule a chiropractic or rehabilitation appointment.  Be sure to follow us on social media for the latest news and updates as well.