Does your Office Chair Need a ‘Checkup’?

It’s nearly the end of the financial year in Australia… So many of us are keen to maximise our tax deductions!

 

If you’re been feeling a bit uncomfortable in your office chair and wondering if it’s right for you, this is the perfect time to give your chair at work a ‘checkup’ and see if you’re due a new one!

 

Many people ask me about what they should look for in a good, ‘ergonomic’ office chair..

So this week I’ll take you through Part 1 of your ‘Office Chair Checkup’

 

The first question you’ll need to ask is whether it’s height adjustable?🤔

 

Now, if you tend to sit on a dining chair or waiting room type chair, you might want to work towards finding something a bit more suitable..

 

Your body will thank you!

 

So, I’m afraid it’s a ‘Fail’ straight up if your chair can’t go up and down to suit you and your desk height.😨

 

In that case, hunt around your house or office to see if there’s a height adjustable office-type chair you can use OR head here to my shop page to checkout the one that ticks all the boxes for adjustable, ergonomically friendly chairs, that suits most people and is best value for money…

And order with FREE SHIPPING before the end of the financial year!🎉

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Is your Satchel, Carrybag or Handbag Ruining your Posture?

To answer the question, Is my carry bag ruining my posture?

Short answer, yes..

Carrying the wrong bag and carrying it poorly places heaps of strain on your shoulders, back and neck..😫

BUT, you can take steps to reduce the load your bag puts on your posture.🎉
 

How much your bag- backpack, satchel or handbag- affects your posture is determined by these things..
 
1)    The type of Bag
 
2)    How heavy it is
 
3)    The way you carry it
 
4)    Your postural strength and endurance
 
So, let’s look at these factors  and see which ones you can improve on..


1)    What type of bag do you tend to carry?

A Laptop bag?💼
A Handbag?👜
A Backpack?🎒
A gym bag?💪
 
It’s probably a ‘no-brainer’, but bags that allow you to carry your load fairly symmetrically win every time.
 
So backpacks are great- and there’s some pretty cool ones out there is you hunt around..
 
The best ones have a waist strap that allows you to distribute some weight to your hips and pelvis. That’s especially important is you have a heavy backpack, are carrying it long distances or have a sore, weak spine. 🎒

.. but maybe not ‘the look’ you’re after?

The next best option is a ‘satchel type’ bag that allows you to spread the load from one shoulder, across the chest, and the weight hand on the opposite side… more about how to carry it well later 💼
 
If you have a casual carry bag (like a gym bag), make sure it has a longer ‘over the shoulder’ handle, so you can carry it like the satchel rather than both handles. 
If not, ditch it!
 
Lastly, the Handbag. Well, ladies, we do have a tendency to fall in love with a gorgeous handbag! 👜
 
Truth is, is you wanna do your posture a favour, keep your handbag as small as you can. 
NOT choose the oversize option that allows you to fit the kitchen sink- unless it’s just for the beach!

 

2)    How heavy it is

You knew it was coming! 

Yep, it’s time to give your carry bag a spring clean 😃
 

The last time I did this, I found an industrial sized tape measure in the bottom that weighed a tonne! No wonder I was feeling weighed down L
 
So make sure you only have in it what you absolutely need so you’re not putting unnecessary strain on your body.

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This Simple Tip can Fix your Rounded Shoulders

Have you noticed you’ve got rounded shoulders? 

Or concerned you might develop rounded shoulders?🤔

 

Let’s face it, most of us who sit at a computer or desk a lot, even with best intentions, spend a little time slumped, with rounded shoulders…😟

 

Is that harmful, you ask?

 

Well, having rounded shoulders puts heaps more load on your neck, shoulders and upper back…

 

That puts you in a poor posture that increases your risk of pain, stiffness, headaches, injury, limited breathing.. I could go on. Ahhh!😫

 

I’ve got a little tried and tested tip that helps my clients put their shoulders in a much better position to reverse that rounded-ness.. YAY!

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Work on a laptop often? Here’s 2 Things you MUST KNOW

Working on a laptop is particularly grueling and here’s why..

The screen is attached to your keyboard 😧

Well doh, I hear you say, isn’t that the whole point?

To make your workstation portable?

Well yes, but ergonomically speaking, this is totally setting you up for failure… unless you take two CRITICAL STEPS.

I’ll explain why…

When you use your laptop’s inbuilt keyboard and mouse, you’re inevitably looking down at your screen.

You might already know that looking down at your screen ruins your neck, shoulders, upper back? It also sets you up for postural disaster!😳

But if you raise your screen to take the strain off your neck and back, your arms and wrists end up in a terrible position for typing. 😨

Yikes!

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Wanna Know the #1 PRINCIPLE you MUST FOLLOW to improve your Health and Safety at work?

Guess what?
 
It’s ‘World Health and Safety Day at Work’ this Saturday. 🎉🎉
 
OK, so we’re not all ‘Health and Safety’ officers or wearing ‘Hi Vis’ gear at work…
 
But we ALL need to some responsibility for our own health and wellness during (and outside of) work hours..
 
… For our own benefit 🙂
 
Whether you spend your day sitting at a desk
OR are on your feet all day
OR drive a lot
OR do lots of manual labour
OR repetitive tasks
OR a combination of all the above
… there’s risk involved in all occupations!
 
If we sit all day, our metabolism slows and we get stiff and sore (and risk Chronic disease).
 
IF we stand all day our circulation can get sluggish, our veins distended and back and legs tire under the load.
 
If we bend and twist a lot, the torsion through our spine and hips is hard to cope with. This often results in injury…
 
You see my point?
 
There’s no one occupation that is ‘Risk free’ and guarantees our body won’t suffer.
 
Yes, ‘health and safety’ at work is all about minimising risk of injury.
It’s also about maximising our physical and mental wellbeing!
 
That’s where you come in…
 

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2 HOT TIPS to SAVE YOUR NECK when using your smartphone

How do you feel after you’ve been sitting returning emails on your phone or scrolling through social media for a while?

 

Do you get a stiff, sore neck? 😳

 

If you’re anything like most of us, you’ll start to realise your neck and shoulders are getting a bit achy, maybe tired or stiff, and you might even end up with a bit of a headache. 😨

 

Is that you too?

 

Well, I just happen to be on holidays this week with my family..

And you know what that means? 🤔

 

Less time with clients and on my laptop and more time on my phone, especially on social media!

 

We don’t get much of a break over summer because my husband works in Cricket..

so from October onwards is a crazy time of year for us. The kids and I hang out to spend some time with altogether after the season’s all wrapped up early April.

 

We hopped on the plane Saturday and I spent some time reading on my phone at the airport and during the flight. 🤓

 

Then catching up on some emails and social media after the kids were in bed that night I noticed it…

 

The Headache +

The strain at the base of my skull +

The ache at the base of my neck 😰

 

Yep, I’d been stuck sitting in strange positions, in strange places, and had forgotten my golden rules…

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Forward Head Posture- a right PAIN IN THE NECK!

Take a second to think about the position of your head and neck as you’re reading this…

If someone took a side-on profile photo of you right now, would your head be forward compared to your shoulders? Your answer is likely to be a ‘yes’!

You might look like the picture above, where your head and neck is protruding forward compared to your shoulders, and that’s called a ‘Forward Head Posture’.

SO what’s the big deal? Aren’t most of us guilty of tending to slump into a forward head posture from time to time? Well, while most of us are guilty, and DO tend towards a forward head posture, it’s definitely NOT something you want to make a habit of.

A forward head posture places tonnes of load on your neck and shoulders…

Obviously, this can lead to pain and stiffness in those areas, headaches and even arm and back pain.

What’s more, if left unchecked, a forward head posture can lead to arthritis in your neck and upper back, restriction in your shoulder movement and, eventually, a hunched back!

You need to be determined to reverse it while you still can!

Here’s a quick test you can do to see if you have, or are heading towards, a forward head posture…

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Are YOU at risk of developing a HUNCHBACK?

I’ve been talking you through some posture types lately and you might be wondering…

What’s MY posture type?

If you haven’t already, I encourage you to checkout the DIY POSTURE CHECKUP I’ve put together so you can find out!

 

This week I’m focussing on probably the most common and most problematic of posture types, an INCREASED (Thoracic) KYPHOSIS… an increased curve in the upper part of the back (the Thoracic Spine) which you might associate with a ‘Hunchback’.

 

It’s hard for all of us not too succumb to gravity, as our weight falls forwards when we sit at a desk, or on our laptop or slumped over our smartphone… but if you don’t make a conscious effort to reverse your posture often and strengthen the right muscles you can end up having an irreversible ‘hunch’… and if this posture type tends to run in your family your risk is greater.

 

Now most people certainly don’t see or feel the subtle signs of developing a hunchback… They might include

  • Stiffness in their upper back
  • Tightness, tension or even pain across the shoulders and upper back
  • Difficulty raising arms overhead
  • difficulty straightening up completely

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Worried about your Posture? Get a FREE DIY POSTURE CHECKUP!

We’ve been talking lots about our sitting posture- what’s good and bad- and some exercises to improve your sitting posture. It’s true that often your stiffness and soreness can be related to the type of posture you have, or that you tend to adopt when you’re tired.

 

But lots of people are asking me- What TYPE of posture do I actually have?

 

How do I know if I have GOOD or BAD posture?

 

When someone medically trained assesses your posture, we’d usually do it in standing, so I’ve done up a special posture check sheet that you can follow along for yourself at home… a FREE DIY POSTURE CHECKUP! CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS!

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Is Slouching REALLY that Bad for you?

I’ve recently been talking about the essential 3 steps to sitting with a healthy posture in your chair… and I could hear some of you thinking…

 

‘What’s REALLY so bad about slouching in your chair?

 

Remember I explained that slouching causes your tail to tuck under, your trunk to flex forwards and your head and neck to poke forwards, like the picture above, but what are the consequences for this?

 

So here’s the 3 biggest problems with slouching

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