Will A Back Brace Improve Posture?
The Best Back Braces For Posture Correction.
Poor posture is one of the main causes of spinal stress. It's also reaching epidemic proportions with the increasing popularity and dependence on technology (those shiny screens that we all love to stare at!). Most of us can probably remember our parents and teachers telling us over and over to 'sit up straight' and 'stop slouching'. But if you have a look around, particularly at teens, you will see that those old messages have not been enough. Rounded shoulders and forward head posture is the new normal. But it is not healthy, and there is lots of evidence showing the detrimental effects that poor posture has on our health beyond the obvious appearances.
Ideally we want to avoid poor posture developing, but what can you do when it's already there? Will a back brace improve posture? And do back braces for posture correction even work? Or is there a better alternative such as exercises we can do that will help? In this article on poor posture and back braces, you'll find out.
If you are unfortunate enough to wear a back brace when you were younger, then the idea of back braces for posture correction might seem like a terrible thing to you.
However, back braces have become increasingly popular recently, as more and more people are becoming aware of their posture and are looking for a way to improve it. The back braces that we used to use for various back ailments in the past are significantly different to the braces that we use today to improve posture.
What Are Back Braces for Posture Correction?
The idea of wearing a back brace to improve posture is generally to hold you in a position of correct posture, and retrain your muscles so that your back will maintain an upright position without a lot of effort.
When people spend a lot of time hunching forward, such as in front of a computer, or if they are not particularly active, they start to lose their muscle tone in their torso, core muscles, and abs. Also, they may start to hunt should their shoulders forward, which can make things even worse.
By using back braces for posture, you can begin building those muscles in a way that helps you stand upright.
Even people who have been slumping or slouching for many years can utilise a brace to help their posture.
Posture braces can address poor control in the lower back or in the mid to upper back and shoulders during the initial phase when you have no or little postural awareness.
As your posture improves with your posture exercises to address muscle strength and endurance you can transition from a heavy to lower support posture brace. Further weaning to kinesiology postural taping may be taken to help achieve the final transition to perfect posture without a posture brace or posture taping.
Why Do You Need Good Posture?
There are a number of different reasons why good posture is important, even though you may think that this is only a cosmetic issue.
First of all, when you stand upright with good posture, you will appear taller and thinner, and obviously a lot more confident too. If you looked at photographs of one person, and they were slouching in one photo and standing tall in another, they would probably look like two different people to you, and you would also have a different opinion of them, too.
Secondly, When you are slouching, you are also not getting sufficient oxygen into your body, which means that lack of posture actually affects your energy level. As a result, you may actually gain weight and become tired more easily when you are not prone to standing or sitting upright.
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What's The Catch?
The problem with any brace, whether it is a posture brace, or a back, knee, or ankle brace, is that you can quickly become dependant on them. What this means is that the brace will give you 'artificial' support, meaning in turn that your own muscles no longer need to do the job of providing support and a result, the muscles can start to weaken. This can actually make the problem you are trying to correct (poor posture, bad back, flat feet etc.) even worse.
This is why it is crucially important that you wear your brace ONLY for short periods of time, around 30 minutes maximum. Of course a smarter way is always to actually strengthen muscles that are weakened or out of balance with other muscles. Particularly with poor posture and back pain, you must work on strengthening your posterior chain muscles. Healthyspines.org's Total Back Pain Solution online exercise program specifically shows you exactly what to do in order to strengthen these vital spinal stabilising and postural muscles.
So be sure to follow a postural exercise program as well as using your postural brace. This way you are guaranteed to get long lasting postural correction, not just a temporary fix.
Are There Different Types of Braces?
There are a number of different types of back braces for posture, from the cheap and simple, to expensive custom made braces, and even tech savvy braces that can connect to your smart phone.
If your doctor has addressed your posture with you, then they may recommend one of their favourite brands. They may also recommend that you have a brace custom made for you. For some people with special needs, such as scoliosis, this may be your only choice, but it could set you back hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
If there is one thing that most back braces have in common, it is that they are unattractive and not very comfortable. Especially the older styles of back braces, which were once used for people with back issues or pain, are particularly uncomfortable.
The Best Back Braces For Posture Correction.
HealthySpines.org recommends the following Postural Braces.
The Smart Back Brace is a new product that was released in Dec 2016 and is using the latest technology to improve posture. It is unlike anything else on the market, and it’s not just a shoulder brace! It’s a smart, Bluetooth-connected device that trains you to stay in proper posture. It’s compatible with both iPhone and Android. This kind of tech does not come cheap of course, and this is one of the more expensive posture braces, running at around $100.
The Smart Back Brace was designed to provide the maximum benefits for you:
- Improve your posture by wearing SBB just 15-30 minutes a day
- Maintain your good posture by teaching your body how to hold it
- Better posture will make you feel better not only physically, but also mentally
- Actively monitors your posture.
- 30 day money back guarantee.
- Available for purchase here.
2/ComfyMed Posture Corrector Clavicle Support Brace
Probably the most comfortable posture brace available. The ComfyMed Posture Corrector Clavicle Support Brace features a new hybrid design combining the light weight and freedom of movement of a simple Figure 8 Brace with the support and comfort of a traditional full brace. This simpler posture brace is also a more economical choice.
- EASY TO PUT ON - The only brace that you can put on and adjust by yourself.
- STAND TALL AND CONFIDENT - For the Treatment and Prevention of Cervical and Thoracic Conditions such as bad computer posture
- UNISEX - SIZE REG 29" TO 40" - Measure your Chest under your arms.
- Money back guarantee.
- Available for purchase here.
Is This the Right Kind of Thing for You?
Whether you are looking at a back brace because you want an easy way to improve your posture, or because you are having back or other health issues that this can help you with, finding the right back brace for you is essential.
Ideally, this is not the device you would want to wear for a long period of time each day, because you could actually start relying on it.
But, by wearing a brace, you will be able to strengthen and retrain your muscles without building a dependence on the device.
Because these particular back braces come with a money back guarantee and is also a very affordable price, it is the preferred solution for people who really want to make a change in their posture quickly and effectively.
You will feel better while wearing modern back braces for posture, and your friends and family will also notice that you walk, stand, and sit straighter, too.
So as well as making sure you feel better now, with good spinal care you will be ensuring your future wellbeing too!
If you have any questions, or would like to share your own experience, please leave us a comment below.
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