The percentage of children with postural defect increasing from year to year, forces parents (and not only) to take a deeper and wider interest in the issue of prevention of posture defects. And there will be news that efficient muscles, including the abdomen and back, help maintain a healthy spine and correct body posture. Muscle tension imbalance already occurs in the youngest, and yet the correct balance allows us to maintain a vertical position and perform simple and very complex movements.
In a child, the abdominal and back muscles develop gradually at their own natural pace. We can assess a child’s attitude only at the first independent standing attempts. The spine has then developed so-called front flexion in the cervical region and slight back flexion in the thoracolumbar region. The correct posture of a small child is characterized by a slightly rounded or completely flat back. Lower limbs placed in a slight flexion in the hip and knee joints. The abdomen, due to the very weak muscles that make up its wall, is strongly prominent. If the child is healthy. There is no point in some special way of exercising with him. Let’s encourage our child to play games as often as possible, let him explore the world freely but safely. It’s best when we get involved in his fun, which will also benefit our spine.
What should bother parents?
- Changes in the attitude of a preschool child are progressing slowly, and significant bulging of the abdomen, rounding of the back. Shoulder blades, protrusion of shoulders and head forward are defective, so they should be prevented.
- The first period is 5 – 7 years old, when our preschooler goes to school and changes his current lifestyle. It largely abandons the free, individually regulated rhythm of “effort-rest” and changes into an imposed system of sitting for several hours.
- The second critical period in shaping the child’s body posture is adolescence, characterized by intense increase in body height. At the beginning, the lower limbs lengthen, and about a year later the torso grows. This disturbs the current balance, changes the proportions of the body and the pre-existing arrangement of its center of gravity. The strength of the muscles responsible for body posture is insufficient. The abdomen becomes prominent again, the back is often excessively round and the head is tilted forward.
The end of puberty is at the same time shaping good posture again. The forebone is finally formed in the lumbar spine, the abdomen becomes flat again, muscle tissue develops strongly. Unfortunately, along with a change in body posture in the antagonistic muscle system, other physiological changes often appear. Which are an open path for the development of pathology. You can see more https://travelingtourism.com/
Over 35 years of age may worsen again. In adults, however, pains associated with abnormal changes occurring mainly in the intervertebral discs, variability in their shape, i.e. intervertebral discs. Children often have a problem with the incorrect shape of the curves of the spine.
Recall the most common postural defects:
Congenital or acquired round back. In younger schoolchildren, muscular dystonia (disturbance of the balance of muscular tension in the back muscles) and neglect of correct posture are often the cause of “round back”.
Concave backs. The essence of this defect is the deepening of lumbar lordosis, and the figure is characterized by deeper bending of the lumbar spine. This defect may be congenital or acquired. Among acquired defects, concave back is most often seen against the background of muscular dystonia. Abdominal, gluteal muscles and knee flexors are weak, while the lumbar spine and hip flexors are excessively tense and often contracted.
Concave round back. Posture defect, in which there are simultaneously characteristic features of round and concave backs. Scoliosis, i.e. lateral curvatures of the spine of various types.
Posture errors. In posture defects, inadequate head positioning, shoulder asymmetry, or incorrect positioning of the shoulder blades are often encountered. Such deviations are included in posture errors.
Prevention and prevention of posture defects
The effects of uncorrected defects, although well tolerated for years. Can lead to irreversible and constantly worsening deformations, degenerative changes in joints, vertebrae. Are also the beginning of very painful failures, having extremely serious consequences in adulthood. And not rarely earlier, during adolescence . There are also aesthetic considerations, also burdensome.
Can parents notice a defect in posture?
Not always. Schools carry out health balances. Which are periodic examinations that allow a doctor or nurse to detect most irregularities. Note, however, whether the child is leaning too far forward when he sits watching TV, his posture, when he stands freely. How the shoulders and shoulders are positioned, whether the back and spine are not too convex. Or there is no asymmetry in body posture.
What does the child’s spine dislike?
It is not advisable to lift heavy objects in a standing position, on straight legs, with the torso leaning forward. Always do it from a squat position. It is important to observe the correct posture at work and during rest, maintain the correct sitting position while doing homework and breaks. That is why it is worth devoting a few words to chairs and armchairs. A good chair in the lumbar part will be bent according to the shape of the lumbar lordosis, it must also be stable. And of suitable height (up to the height of the shoulder blades). When the feet firmly touch the floor and do not hang in the air, then the whole body is positioned firmly and steadily. The pelvis and spine maintain the correct position. An alternative to a chair with backrest is kneeling, which by its design forces you to maintain a proper sitting position. The correct and stable sitting position also affects the precision of our hands – the more stable the position. The easier it is to e.g. write with a pen, pencil on a feather or using the keyboard.
What does the child’s spine like?
Heavy backpacks also have a negative effect on the spine. Constant overloads are not recommended for young skeletal systems. Ideally, students could exchange kilos of textbooks for laptops! Carrying a bag on one shoulder can also be bad for body posture. A backpack that symmetrically loads both shoulders is better. Let’s make sure that children avoid the wrong position of the cervical spine, i.e. constantly tilting the head forward, for example while reading, harmful to the body work with the notebook on your knees, when the head is still bent, and the spine is unnaturally bent and this situation even lasts few hours! Such a position maintained for a long time may lead to discopathy in the future, which is why it is worth constantly reminding our child to sit properly. There are already special stands for desks, books or special desks, with the table top inclined at an angle to avoid constantly bending your head.
Prevention of posture defects
One of the main factors preventing posture defects is movement. Our spine was created to perform support, support and mobility functions. And we spend too much time during the day sitting. We remain in one favorite position, which can cause slow overloading of the spine structures, or faulty body settings. And as a consequence pain from the spine. Let’s observe the animals waking up from sleep, which are dragging, crutching, stretching out and only moving on.
Teaching in early childhood
Let’s try and we! Teaching in early childhood, and then the habit of maintaining proper posture in all activities of life, especially those in which the spine could be overloaded. Let us constantly remind children about the correct attitude, because there is a chance that it will “code” in the brain and become reflexive. Sometimes it happens that the muscles of the anterior chest surface as a result of prolonged maintenance of incorrect posture are already contracted, accompanied by weakness of stretched back muscles. Then, unfortunately, just reminding about the correct posture is no longer enough, exercises to stretch the pectoral muscles and strengthen the back muscles must be included. Such exercises are developed by a doctor or physiotherapist for each patient individually.
Unfortunately, the living conditions of modern man move him away from nature and some body movements are sometimes limited. When proposing preventive programs for the spine, we should use compensatory exercises in them, which would imitate the missing movements and allow maintaining the neuromuscular balance of muscles stabilizing our spine (the technique recommended especially by specialists, doctors and physiotherapists is the Pilates method, especially Pilates standing and balance). New studies at the physiotherapy department at Queensland University (Australia) conducted by Richardson and Jull indicate that by improving coordination and strength in deep parts of the abdominal muscles (including transverse abdomen), the lumbar spine will be stabilized and protected. Strong back and abdominal muscles and a selection of exercises aimed at shaping the correct curvature of the spine will help in engaging deeply located so-called spine stabilizers, strengthening it and preventing pain.
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