Correct human posture, its types, importance in life and health effects

One of the areas of preventive medicine and health promotion is the awareness of the children and adults about the importance of proper posture for the full health. And this is not in vain, because a beautiful bearing causes not only aesthetic satisfaction with its owner and others, but also serves as a component predetermining the physical usefulness of the body and the functional capabilities of internal organs. The main aspects of maintaining and characterizing normal posture, its pathological changes and the possibilities of correction are discussed in this article.

Indicators characterizing the posture

In the understanding of most people, posture is the position of the spine and the back of a person who is in an upright position. This is partly true. But in fact, the human posture is represented by a broader concept, combining: the position of the head and neck;

  • Symmetry of the structures forming the belt of the upper extremities( clavicle, scapula and muscle groups surrounding them);
  • features and severity of vertebral column bends, which determines the shape and position of the back;
  • anatomical features of the thorax and abdominal shape;
  • position of the pelvis and lower limbs.
  • It's important to remember! Posture is a typical position and anatomical relationship of body segments of a particular person, in which he is at ease in a state of rest, staying in a vertical position. Simply put, under the posture is understood the position of the body in which it is convenient for a person to be standing in a relaxed state.

    How the correctness of the

    posture is formed and depends on it. Thanks to evolution, a person managed to acquire the ability to move on the two lower limbs, while being in an upright position. In fact, this is a very complex, unconditionally reflex act involving

    • bones of the skeleton: heel and bones of the feet, legs, thighs, pelvis, all parts of the spine;
    • muscular structures: muscles of the belts of the upper and lower extremities, the cervical, cervical and other muscle groups of the trunk;
    • ligamentous-capsular apparatus of the spine and extremities;
    • neuro-reflector mechanisms that support involuntary muscle tone when the body moves into a vertical position.

    Posture formation is inherently predetermined by hereditary mechanisms. But this is not the only factor affecting its type. Only gross congenital deformations in a state unequivocally determine that the posture will be pathological, and later also in an adult. In all other cases, the phenotypic factors that affect the body after its birth in the process of growth and vital activity are much more important than congenital ones.

    The mechanism of formation of a posture is formed depending on those functional abilities and loads to which the organism is exposed in a concrete time interval. The newborn from the first days of life acquires a straightened spine, which is replaced by its curved type. As the abilities of holding the head, sitting and walking develop, the physiological curves of the vertebral column in the anterior and posterior directions( physiological lordosis and kyphosis) are formed, and the angle of the pelvic incline changes. The correspondence of the tonus, volume of the muscular cortex, in particular of its flexor and extensor group, the activity of the growth of the bone structures and the loads to which they are exposed, determines the type of formation and the defects of posture. Moderate bends of the spine are also needed to minimize the load on its lower sections and improve damping properties during walking or when performing other loads.

    Not the last value in this process is occupied by general and neurogenic factors. After all, even the most ideal in anatomical and functional terms of posture may lose its structure and abilities against the background of violations of metabolic-trophic processes in the body or the innervation of certain muscle groups. All this directly or indirectly affects the characteristics of the spine and other segments of the body that determine the correctness of posture.

    Characteristics of correct posture

    Posture may be considered correct if the median vertical axis of the body passes from the center of the cranial vault. Touching the lower jaw on the back surface, it descends the tangent to the bulge of the cervical region. Slightly cutting an arch of the lumbar lordosis, through the center of the pelvis, passes at the front edge of the knee joint, ending in the central part of the foot. All structures on both sides of this line must be symmetrical.

    Pregnant woman
    Pregnancy and the postpartum period is one of the risk factors for postural disorders in adults

    In practice, the correctness of posture is based on the definition of such signs:

    1. The head is in a straight position.
    2. Symmetry in the arrangement of the angles of the shoulder blades, the foreheads and nipples.
    3. Same length and location of the cervico-humeral lines( conditional lines connecting the ear with the shoulder joint).
    4. Symmetry of triangles of the waist( triangular slots between the trunk and the lowered arms).
    5. The line drawn through the spinous processes of the vertebrae has a straight line.
    6. Uniform expression of bends of the spine anteriorly in the cervical and lumbar and posterior in the thoracic and sacral.
    7. Symmetry of the relief of the lumbar region and thorax in a strictly vertical position and easy tilt of the trunk forward.
    8. Strictly horizontal location of the pelvic axis and symmetry of its bony landmarks.
    9. Same length of lower limbs and normal characteristics of the arches of the feet.

    The characteristics of normal posture vary with age. These differences are insignificant and allow us to identify typical types of posture of preschool, school and youth. The latter does not differ from that of adults. If there is a discrepancy between the data obtained and those that are typical for normal posture, it is said that it has been violated. As a rule, they arise at school age due to incorrect loads and working posture, and in case of untimely correction accompany a person throughout life.

    It's important to remember! The posture assessment is carried out by a routine inspection, provided that the main landmarks are exposed( the test is stripped to the underwear) in a standing position with a uniform support on both legs, which are in the knee-joint position with the heels joined and the socks being split.

    Types and manifestations of postural disorders

    Despite the fact that some pathological conditions from the musculoskeletal system are not considered separate diseases, the influence of posture on human health is unequivocally great. This means that incorrect posture becomes the background on which degenerative-dystrophic processes in the spine can occur( osteochondrosis, compression fractures, persistent scoliosis or other deformities), violation of anatomical interrelations and the functions of internal organs( lungs, heart, digestive system), blood supply worsensthe brain due to compression of the vertebral arteries in the cervical spine. All this is accompanied by a syndrome of severe vertebral pain.

    There are several typical types of posture disorders. The main ones are listed in the table.

    Type of postural disorders Types of violations Characteristics of incorrect posture

    Curvature of the spine in the sagittal plane


    • Strengthening of thoracic kyphosis( bending of the spine posteriorly) of low degree of severity;
    • Weakness of lordosis in the lumbar region;
    • Folded forward and downward shoulders;
    • Insufficient fit of the shoulder blades to the back;

    Round back

    • Enlargement of the thoracic kyphosis at a large extent, as a result of which it becomes an arc;
    • Smoothness of lumbar lordosis;
    • Stay head in tilted forward position;
    • The shoulders are strongly lowered and folded;
    • Pronounced bad fit of the blades;
    • The legs are permanently attached to the knee joints;
    • Sunken chest;
    • Limitation of the mobility of the shoulder joints( the possibility of raising the arms to the top).

    Rounded back

    • Amplification of the arc of all physiological curves;
    • The forehead, head and neck are tilted forward;
    • Protrusion and hanging of the abdomen;
    • The knees are maximally unbent, which arises reflexively to hold the center of gravity of the body;
    • Hypotrophy of muscular groups of back and abdomen;
    • Omission of internal organs.

    Flat back

    • Smoothness of the arch of all physiological vertebral bends;
    • Weakness and upward shift of lumbar lordosis;
    • Stretching forward of the lower abdomen;
    • Weak chest kyphosis;
    • Shift of the chest forward;
    • Hypotrophy of the muscles of the back, chest, belts of the upper and lower extremities.

    Flat-concave back

    • Reduced kyphosis of the thoracic spine;
    • Slight increase in lumbar lordosis;
    • The pelvis and buttocks protrude excessively posteriorly, and the abdomen anteriorly;
    • Narrow chest;
    • Hypotrophy and weakness of abdominal muscles.

    Curvature of the spine in the frontal plane

    Scoliotic posture

    • Displaced line of the spinous processes and vertebral axis to the sides in the form of one large or two or three small arches;
    • Symmetry breaking of segments of the body and limbs: head inclinations in one direction or another, the location of shoulders, shoulders, nipples, shoulder blades at different heights;
    • Symmetry breaking of the waist triangles: their different shape, severity and height;
    • Muscular dystonia of the trunk in the form of an increase or decrease in muscle tone on one side;
    • Reducing muscle strength

    It's important to remember! In some cases, both in adults and in children there is a combination of different types of posture disorder. Most often there is a scoliotic type on the background of a flat back, which is associated with muscular dystonia and weakness of the spine, which can deform in different directions.

    Opportunities for correcting and combating the

    problem Treatment of any postural disorders is a long process, as it is associated with the need to change the structure of dense anatomical structures of the skeleton. It is better, if everything will pass under the control of the orthopedist. The complex of medical measures for violations of posture can be represented as follows:

    1. Normalization of the regimen of day and motor activity.
    2. Complete nutrition.
    3. exercise therapy and therapeutic gymnastics.
    4. Use of special corrective corsets.
    5. Massage and manual therapy.
    6. Physiotherapy procedures.
    7. Sanatorium treatment.

    Normalization of day regimen and motor activity

    In adults and children with impaired posture, it is very important to correct the regimes of daily physical activity, rest and sleep. Their incorrect organization often causes these deviations. The regime of the day should be built in such a way that in it enough time is given to active rest, exclusion of heavy loads on the spine. During sleep, recommended position on the back, eliminates the use of high pillows and soft beds. Used either a solid shield, or special orthopedic mattresses and pillows.

    Regarding the motor activity regimes of those with poor posture, they are determined by the degree of severity of the disorders and can be as follows:

    • Gentle - assumes the mandatory wearing of an individually selected corset. It is prescribed for severe degrees of posture disorder( decompensated scoliosis, postoperative period, etc.).
    • Gentle-training - involves the exclusion of strained loads on the spine. Appointed with pronounced, but compensated violations of posture, which are prone to slow progression.
    • Training - involves strengthening the muscles of the spine and expanding the volume of movements to the level of everyday loads, but excludes professional sports and hard work. It is shown with slightly expressed violations of posture.

    Complete nutrition

    This component of the treatment complex includes correction of the diet in the form of normalizing the amount of protein, carbohydrate and fatty foods. It is necessary to consume enough foods rich in vitamins, microelements and electrolytes, primarily calcium.

    LFK and therapeutic gymnastics

    Read more: posture The main cause of posture violation

    As one of the mechanisms of posture disorders is muscular, by strengthening certain muscular groups of the shoulder girdle and back, you can achieve positive results when fighting this problem. It is established that a powerful muscular corset can completely eliminate the moderate curvature of the spine and keep it in the correct position. Decompensated disorders can not be completely eliminated, but significantly reduced in the background of exercise therapy. The main thing in organizing this process is to pick up a set of correct exercises.

    Using special adjusting corsets

    Using individually manufactured rigid or elastic muscle corsets, not only moderately, but also heavily deformed posture in children can be treated. However, one should not rely solely on this method of correction and necessarily apply it in combination with other techniques. Its advantages are that it is possible to eliminate bone deformities. The only drawback is the appearance of muscle hypotrophy against the background of prolonged wearing of the corset. But this defect can be eliminated by mandatory inclusion in the therapeutic complex of exercise therapy and the exclusion of wearing a rigid corset for light violations of posture.

    Massage, physiotherapy and sanatorium treatment

    Their role in correction of postural disorders is additional. The use of these methods of treatment is more urgent and effective, the less the severity of the pathology. With decompensated deformations, massage and physiotherapy( water procedures, magnetotherapy, electrophoresis, paraffin, etc.) supplement the basic methods of conservative and surgical treatment. Sanatorium-and-spa activities are excellent for all children and adults in the rehabilitation period.

    The child is sitting right at the desk
    The correct position behind the training desk is one of the main methods of preventing postural disorders in children

    How to prevent the

    problem Prevention of posture disorders should be carried out from an early age. It includes:

    • use of a firm and orthopedic bed for sleeping;
    • correction of foot pathology( clubfoot, flat feet) by making special shoes and using orthopedic insoles;
    • the correct organization of the motor and rest regime;
    • eliminates heavy physical exertion on the spine. The advantage should be given to the usual active lifestyle;
    • tight control over the correctness of body position in everyday life( sitting at a desk, uniform distribution of loads when wearing backpacks and briefcases, etc.);
    • full balanced nutrition, appropriate age;
    • selection of furniture according to the age or individual characteristics of the child;
    • water sports and hardening.

    Posture disorders are considered a common problem, which in most cases can be eliminated without the use of special medical measures. It is enough only to realize the reasons for its occurrence and the desire to make small adjustments to the habitual way of life.

    Man doing yoga
    • Posture characteristics
    • How
    • posture is formed and depends on posture Characteristics of correct posture
    • Types and manifestations of postural disorders
    • Options for correcting and dealing with
    • problem How to prevent