The effects of technology on us
On a day to day basis we use many electric devices either at work or home. These devices have become vital pieces of equipment in our modern age. Tablets, laptops, mp3’s and phones are the most we commonly used.
As a remedial massage therapist of 8 years, I have seen a dramatic increase in clients with very common ailments, symptoms, aches and pains over the past few years. It is only after consultation that a strong pattern appears in the routines of the client.
Young adults and children are growing up with technology as part of their childhood, teen and adult life. As a mother to a nine year old boy I am very aware of his posture when he is working on a school project or playing on his computer. He can be so engrossed in a project that he would (if I let him) would sit in an awkward position for hours. I instantly recognise when his posture is incorrect and either I or he adjusts his position accordingly.
I am constantly trying to teach him the values of good posture and simple stretching techniques which he can understand and use. I have witnessed many children and teens who sit for hours and hours a day playing computer games on a console or device; craning their necks or crouched intensely over a lap top.
It is vital that we understand the effects of bad posture from the start of life right the way through. I would love to see Pilates or yoga in our schools. Do our teachers know the benefits of good posture for themselves as well as their pupils? Here are a few scenarios, that you many do you recognise?
- Using laptop on sofa – Shoulders round, chin is tucked in. Pectoral muscles in chest shorten, neck and back muscles stretch to compensate. Neck muscles shorten can contribute to head aches and migraines
- Tablet – Head lowered to chin, strain on back of the neck. Arm and wrist strain from holding the tablet for a sustained amount of time.
- Phone – Head tucked in neck muscles strained (double chin effect). Neck & shoulder muscles over stretched causing pain.
- Games consoles – Certain games can be very intense. A person can be in a strained position for a sustained amount of time. Craned neck, shoulders rounded from holding hand console and hand wrist RSI (repetitive strain injury). Neck, shoulder, hand and wrist pain.
- Desk based computer – Work station not set for individual. • Computer monitor – Incorrect height – Neck and shoulder pain and headaches & migraines
- Mouse and key board- Not at a right angle for shoulder and arm. Keyboard and mouse set a distance away in desk area. Arm, wrist & shoulder constant pain, RSI.
- Work station chair – No lumbar support, no arm rests, not height adjustable. Lower back , sciatic mid back pain. • Foot stall – Pelvis is not at a level height – leg & lower back pain.
Spend less time on a device!
If you don’t have a foot stall prop a small cupboard box under your feet Small cushion to support your lower back Buy yourself a laptop stand, separate mouse and keyboard for your laptop Give yourself breaks. Stand up stretch and have a 5 minute walk. Join a local regular Pilates or yoga class
Good posture, can be the difference between a life of ease or a life of pain.
Director – Therapist