After a long day at work, you shouldn’t be surprised if you feel tense or have back pain. Many people sit behind a desk for an average of 10 hours a day, which puts strain on their back muscles and compresses the vertebrae.
Sitting for a long period of time can increase back pain and prevent circulation, leaving the spine without nutrients.
Having poor posture can cause some significant health problems, way worse than back pain. It can make you feel fatigued, contribute to digestive issues and cause weight gain. In contrast, having good posture can make you feel more energetic and improve your respiratory health.
Over the years, a lot of studies have been conducted on over 800,000 people who led a sedentary lifestyle. The results show that 9 out of 10 people experience some of the consequences that this lifestyle brings.
If your doctor recommended posture braces, don’t let that scare you off. Today’s back braces are much different from the ones used back in the day. Many of them are lightweight and unnoticeable underneath clothes. Using back braces to improve posture is now more popular than ever. But, do posture braces really work?
How does a posture corrector work?
Sitting with your shoulders forward can tighten the soft muscle tissues on your chest, while lengthening your back muscles. Your body is programmed to adapt to the position you spend the most time in, so if the chest and back muscles adapt this way, you will find it very difficult to get out of that position. So, how do posture correctors work?
Posture braces work by slightly pulling your muscles back into their natural position, and preventing us from slouching. Wearing them even for 30 minutes a day can help you achieve good posture and improve your overall health.
You need to find a posture corrector that will also make your body do some of the work. This will cause your back muscles to strengthen and help you avoid relying on the device for keeping good posture.
Do posture correctors work?
As we already know, the body tends to adapt to any position you spend the most time in. As posture correctors pull your shoulders back and lift your chest, the muscle tissues have no other choice than to adapt to this new position, making it easier for you to maintain good posture.
The key is to find a posture corrector that is comfortable so you can wear it as long as it takes. There are many products out there so it shouldn’t be difficult to find a posture brace that will suit all your needs.
A certain type of posture brace might work for you better than another type, so before picking one, take everything into consideration and discuss it with your doctor.
It usually takes around 1 month for you to see noticeable results from using a posture brace. So make sure you go through with it for at least a month, to see if the brace suits you before you give up and look for another one.
While wearing a posture brace, it is also recommended to get moderate physical activity, as a large part of keeping good posture is muscle strength. In addition, you’ll get used to it quicker.
Are posture correctors safe?
What most people are afraid of when using posture correctors is that they will have sore back muscles. However, this doesn’t apply to everyone and it certainly isn’t true for all posture correctors. If you go slowly and don’t force your body into good posture overnight, you can avoid this problem. Keep in mind that balance is the key to everything in life. To get the best posture brace effectiveness, you need to wear it in short intervals and be patient. Don’t expect to see significant changes right away, since you’ll only get discouraged and give up.
Let’s be real. Your body didn’t get this way in a week, so you can’t expect to revert to good posture in a short amount of time.
Discomfort is normal when you wear a posture corrector, especially at the beginning. So if you feel a bit uncomfortable wearing it, it doesn’t mean that it is not doing its job. It also doesn’t mean that it is doing its job if you feel pain, as pain doesn’t necessarily mean that your muscles are adapting.
The most important thing you can do is adjust it properly and follow the guidelines. Every posture corrector has a recommended amount of time that you’re allowed to wear it.
Are posture braces effective?
By now, you are probably thinking “Why should I spend my money on something like this, when I can force myself to keep good posture for free?”
Well, the truth is, you can’t.
When you are forcefully trying to stand up straight and pull your shoulders back, you use your phasic muscles instead of your postural muscles.
The postural muscles’ main function is keeping us upright against gravity. These types of muscles are also called “fatigue resistant muscles” as they don’t tire out quickly.
We are rarely aware of these muscles as they work without any conscious effort.
On the contrary, phasic muscles work quite differently. They allow us to perform physical activities. These muscles need a conscious decision in order to work.
So, intentionally trying to keep good posture is not the right thing. Your phasic muscles will tire out quickly and you won’t be able to maintain that position.
Additionally, most posture braces are designed to be worn under clothes, so you will be able to wear them at work or at times when you are most active.
By wearing a posture brace at work, on the go or in the car while driving, you will learn how to do all your daily activities while keeping good posture. This will make it easier for you to maintain good posture in the future without wearing a brace.
Another great thing about posture braces is that they are affordable.
Now that we’ve answered the question “do posture correctors really work?” there’s nothing preventing you from making your life better by avoiding the health issues that bad posture might bring in the future.