This really does not require a whole lot of explanation. At least in my opinion. Being that the spine is such a large part of our framework, it should be rather obvious to us, why keeping it healthy is important.
The spine is what helps us to stand and remain upright. It provides the basic framework for our structure. It really is the main point from which the rest of our skeleton connects to! The spine allows us to walk, run , bend, twist and move freely within our environment.
The spine houses the spinal cord and protects it. This is probably the greatest and most important function the spine provides. When you consider all that the spinal cord does to allow us to live and function normally and optimally, protecting it definitely ranks high. Without our spinal cord every organ function would be compromised and “normal life” as we know it would cease. We would not be able to move, we would not be breathe, to digest food, to process our thoughts and emotions. Really the list goes on.
To sustain an active and healthy life, we must prioritize spinal health.
Performing daily mobility exercises to improve and support flexibility and function is one of the best things you can do to support excellent spinal health. There are a few other things you want to make sure you are doing on a regular basis to support optimal spinal health.
Make sure your spine is properly supported during sleep. This means that buying a good mattress and pillows is very important. A poor quality or old mattress and pillows that have lumps and are too soft does not support proper spinal alignment, and this will compound into other issues if you continue to sleep unsupported. A mattress that is more on the firm side is best for optimal spinal support.
We live in an era where many of us spend our days on computers. The benefit of this is that it allows us to work remotely and from almost anywhere in the world. The downside is that the amount of time we spend sitting has and continues to increase.
A 2019 study that the Washington Post reported on, showed that the average American adults spends 6.5 hours a day sitting … that is an increase of one hour a day since 2007! (1)
The discs that are in the lower spine take a lot more load when we sit. Therefore, long periods of time spent sitting can cause painful lower back conditions. Luckily for us office ergonomics has become a very popular industry, so finding a good chair that supports good posture while sitting, is not a difficult task. That and taking the time to get up from your desk regularly thought the workday and MOVE!
Put Your Best Foot Forward
Footwear is such a huge fashion statement and who does not love a great pair of sneakers that announces, “I have arrived!” However, when it comes to spinal health having really good shoes with a supportive base is a no-brainer. And take into account the kind of activity you do regularly, because shoe design has come a long way in that it is no longer a “one size fits all” scenario. If you are an avid walker than you need a really good walking shoe, if you are a runner than you need a shoe designed to withstand that kind of pounding and support your spine.
Taking our spine and everything that it does can be easily taken for granted. I know I did for many years till I suddenly found myself in bed for almost a month barely able to move.
Doing things consistently, to support excellent spinal health, will go a very long way in allowing you to enjoy a better quality of life as you get older. Because keep in mind please that “growing older does NOT mean GETTING OLD!”