ARE VIDEO GAMES BAD FOR YOUR BACK POSTURE?
Poor posture can lead to back pain over time, and gamers with poor posture while gaming are especially prone to developing back problems. Whether you casually play video games to pass the time or you take your hobby quite seriously, sitting in the same position for extended gaming sessions can cause problems for your neck,mid back or even lower back. Below are some tips to help you sit properly whilst gaming and to enjoy your favourite video games in a healthy way.
HAVE GAMING HABITS CHANGED?
Gaming habits have certainly changed over the decades. While it may have been common to stand up to play video games at video arcades back in the 80s, anyone over 30 (more or less) likely grew up playing console games like Nintendo or Sega in front of a television set. The types of games played in those days tended to be shorter sessions than what is common today.
Today’s gamers generally sit for extended periods and gaming sessions can last as long (or even longer) than a typical full-time work shift. The key difference is that the more modern type of gaming, whether on console or PC, tends to get people seated for far longer than in years prior. What this means is that if you’re sitting in a position with a poor posture for hours on end, day in and day out, there is a real potential for discomfort and neck and back pain over time.
WHAT IS POSTURAL SYNDROME?
If you’re the type that slouches over when gaming, you may already have or be developing postural syndrome. What is postural syndrome? It can be defined as a position whereby your shoulders are rounded (slouching) and / or you begin experiencing symptoms such as aches and pains in the neck, head, shoulders or even lower back. This can happen when gaming at a desk on PC or on console, but it is especially common nowadays for those gaming from their phones and a continual poor posture.
If you’re sitting in this type of position for a few minutes in between your work shift or while waiting for the kettle to boil, it’s no big deal. But most people are sitting in these types of positions for many hours at a time to play their favourite games. At this point, it is (if not already) putting you on track to developing back pain.
HOW TO ALLEVIATE BACK PAIN AND ENJOY VIDEO GAMES
If you find yourself slouching over to play video games, you can correct this behaviour and avoid developing more serious back problems with a little discipline and some good posture.
Quite simply, one of the best habits to get into is to sit up straight, tuck your chin slightly, and align your shoulders straight. It’s easier said than done, however, so some frequent reminders to correct your posture can certainly help.
One trend that many gamers are getting into is to set up a timer with a consistent reminder to do a ‘posture check.’ This is good, but it’s also good advice to get up and stretch every half an hour or so even with a good posture.
If you’re feeling back pain and you play video games frequently, you may wish to consult a chiropractor to help alleviate some of that back pain and to obtain a professional diagnosis.
Reach out to us at Better Backs for great posture and a healthy lifestyle.