Gait, Posture & Health


Correct posture means the balancing of body in accurate and proper manner while sitting, standing, reading, and writing or during any other action of body. The foremost impression of an individual is gathered from how he stands sits and walks. In a proper posture, the whole body weight falls on both feet without any effort and the entire body appears to be in a vertical line. In this position all the limbs of body perform their functions efficiently. Posture is dynamic and changes according to the activity.

The human body wages a constant battle against the force of gravity. Even while we are asleep, we change our positions a number of times to avoid discomfort. This discomfort is largely caused by pressure on the soft tissues between the bony structures and the supporting surface upon which the body is resting. The downward pull of gravity is a force that is capable of causing changes of various parts of the body when the biped position is assumed. These changes affect the skeletal system, because they change the alignment of the bony levers at various joints. Consequently, these changes cause many changes within the muscular system.

In fact, posture is the result of man’s adaption to the force of gravity upon his biped position. Unfortunately, when one speaks of posture, the connotation is usually that of an assumed, static, erect standing position. It is more suitable and accurate to accept the concept of postures, because it provides the basis for a more functional approach to posture. Development of strength and endurance in the muscles and flexibility in the joints is prerequisite for improved functioning. Such developments are necessary if one is to assume correct posture.

As a matter of fact, there is no one single best posture for all individuals. Each person must take the body he has and make the best use of it. For each person the best posture is that in which the body segments are balanced in the position of least strain and maximum support but even then there are, some general norms regarding postural positions:

Correct posture of standing:  both the heels of the feet should meet each other. Toes of the feet should be 3’’ to 4’’ apart. The whole body should be erect, straight knees, chin inside, chest forward, belly backward and pressed inside with equal body weight on both feet. In this position, the complete body should be balanced. From the side, line of the center of gravity must pass through the ear, shoulder, hip, knee and ankle. In such a position the muscles and ligaments remain free of stress.

Correct posture of sitting: when we sit in a chair, our hips should be as far back in the chair as possible. Head, spinal column, shoulder and hips should be in straight line and erect. Legs should touch the ground and not in hanged position. Thighs should be in horizontal position. While we read, the book should be on the table but the book should not be too away or near the eyes. The approximate distance between book and eyes should be at least 30 cms. If we do not follow this rule then eye-sight problem may occur. For writing, a table with slight inclination towards outside is appropriate.

Correct posture of walking: way of walking reflects the personality of an individual. It indicates inferiority complex if an individual walks with dropped neck and imbalanced steps. If someone walks with erect neck and chest out, it is an example of superiority complex. The best posture of walking is that the lines of the feet should be parallel to the line of direction. There should be heel-toe action. If we adopt wrong posture of walking, we may get fatigue at the earliest.

Correct posture of lying: normal size of pillow should be used by the children. Hard bed is beneficial for those, who have spinal problems. We should sleep in such state that we should not feel any difficulty in respiration.

Henceforth, you must have noted that how even the posture of your body helps you to remain fit and healthy and what ways you should adopt for attaining a perfect posture.



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