PRACTISE GOOD POSTURE: Slouching over your work station can lead to neck and back problems and general ill health.
PRACTISE GOOD POSTURE: Slouching over your work station can lead to neck and back problems and general ill health. AndreyPopov

Take good care of your spine

WE ALL recognise a strong, confident person when we see one. What is it that we identify? Consider those around you who seem to exude confidence, look extraordinary and you should notice something they all have in common. It's how they carry themselves.

Body language is a powerful communicator. It can say more about you than you can say with words. Your posture sends out subtle signals of confidence, self-assurance and health to everyone around you.

As a chiropractor and amateur strength athlete, I am very aware of such things as posture and body language. Not only is a strong and agile frame an important communicator but an essential component of your health.

What is the key to a strong and healthy posture? Your spine. As the centre of your body and protector of your vitally important spinal cord, your spine is a phenomenal piece of architecture. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine said, "look first to the spine for the cause of all dis-ease". That this was acknowledged over two thousand years ago shows spinal health has long been known to influence our overall health.

We all know the importance of brushing our teeth every day. We don't wait for our teeth to get sore or start bleeding before we brush them. We know that pro-actively taking care of our teeth is the best way to ensure we will maintain good dental health. But when was the last time you did something to look after your spine? Just like your teeth, you only get one spine. Just as you take care of your teeth, regular care of your spine is vital. Just because it isn't as visible as your teeth doesn't mean it's any less important.

Some regular practices to consider to care for your spine: Pay attention to your posture! Sitting and standing upright, with ease is the best practice for your posture. Avoid the habit of hunching over your computer or phone, or slouching in front of the television. Incorporate stretching and strength exercises into your week like lifting weights, pilates or swimming.

Your local chiropractor is highly trained in identifying stress in the skeletal and nervous systems. Getting adjusted regularly by your chiropractor can help to re-establish better posture, movement and improve the function and health of your body.

Exciting new research has shown that chiropractic adjustments to the spine change the way your brain functions. In particular, the part of the brain that coordinates behaviour, decision-making, memory and attention, processing of pain and the emotional response to it.

What is one thing you will do today to take care of your spine and make life more extraordinary?