Backpacks in November?

Your child’s backpack should never weigh more than 15% of their body weight.  We recently gave a series of Backpack Safety Workshops at a local Middle School.  A random sampling of the student’s backpacks found the majority were 25-30% of their body weight.  Only one student’s backpack was below 15%.

Heavy backpacks are one of the major causes of back pain in school age students. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics 6% of 10 year olds and 18% of 14-16 year olds have low back pain.  Only 7% of those children with low back pain seek medical treatment.

There are many causes of low back pain in children including laptops, sitting, smart phones and poor posture.  Here we will focus on backpacks.  Below are important tips to make backpacks less dangerous to your school aged children:

  • Make sure your backpack weighs no more than 10 – 15% of your body weight
  • Empty your backpack periodically to insure it contains no unnecessary items
  • Make sure your backpack hangs no more than 4 inches below your waist
  • Use both straps!
  • Use thickly padded straps
  • If your backpack has a waist strap, use it!
  • Always place the heaviest items closed to your back (your center of gravity)
  • Always lift with your legs, without twisting

Now is a great time to weigh your child’s backpack.  If it weighs more than 15% of their body weight, go through it and make sure it only contains what they need for school.  If you child complains of back pain take it seriously and seek chiropractic care ASAP.   If your school would be interested in our Backpack Safety Workshop please contact me.  We do these as a public service.

“The Wayland Middle School Wellness department is so thankful to have partnered with the amazing chiropractors at Performance Health Center for a second year. Through their generous donation of time, we were able to teach over 200 6th graders about proper posture, how to properly pack a backpack, and how to prevent injuries by teaching them the guidelines on how to wear a backpack properly.”

Pam Riddle, M.Ed., ATC, CMT

Wellness & Health Teacher

Are You Eating Too Much Protein?

The latest nutritional fad seems to be to ingest more and more protein.  We see it everywhere- this snack is “Packed with Protein”, and “make sure to get enough protein at every meal”.  I hear it all the time at the gym… “What kind of protein powder do you use in your shakes”.  I also see guys add 3 scoops of protein powder to their shaker bottle at 30 grams of protein per scoop- which equals 90 grams of protein in one “recovery shake”.

Most research studies state that the human body can only process between 25 and 35 grams of protein at one time, so ingesting more than that at any one time and your body may not be able to absorb it all.

Getting too much protein, especially long-term, can even lead to dangerous side effects and may cause health problems. The 2006 review in the “International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism” reports that excess protein can exceed your liver’s ability to properly break down and excrete the protein, which can lead to toxin buildup in your blood or even death. A study published in 2012 in the “American Journal of Kidney Disease” found that following a high-protein diet over the long term may lead to kidney disease.

The use of protein powders is a relatively new dietary staple for many people.  The real question should be:

How Much Protein Do We Really Need?

I recently read an interesting article in the New York Times that specifically addresses this question.

“The recommended intake for a healthy adult is 46 grams of protein a day for women and 56 grams for men. And while protein malnutrition is a problem for millions of people around the globe, for the average adult in developed countries, we are eating far more protein than we actually need.

Most American adults eat about 100 grams of protein per day, or roughly twice the recommended amount. Even on a vegan diet people can easily get 60 to 80 grams of protein throughout the day from foods like beans, legumes, nuts, broccoli and whole grains.

The Hartman Group, a consumer research firm that has been conducting a study of American food culture over the past 25 years and counting, has found that nearly 60 percent of Americans are now actively trying to increase their protein intake. Many are avoiding sugar and simple carbohydrates and turning to protein-rich foods, snacks and supplements. The firm calls protein “the new low-fat” or “the new low-carb,” even “the new everything when it comes to diet and energy.”

“Soccer moms feel they can’t be anywhere without protein,” says Melissa Abbott, the firm’s vice president for culinary insights. “Really it’s that we’ve been eating so many highly processed carbs for so long. Now it’s like you try nuts, or you try an egg again, or fat even” to feel full and help you “get through the day.”

In her research, Ms. Abbott said she always seems to be finding beef jerky in gym bags and purses, and protein bars in laptop bags or glove compartments. Many consumers, she notes, say they are afraid that without enough protein they will “crash,” similar to the fear of crashing, or “bonking,” among those who are elite athletes.

But most of us are getting more than enough protein. And few seem to be aware that there may be long term risks of consuming too much protein, including a potential increased risk of kidney damage.

If you want to learn more, I highly recommend reading this article from the New York Times “Can you Get Too Much Protein?”

If you have any questions about this blog, or your health in general, please feel free to contact me at



Zinc, It’s Not Just about Vitamin C Anymore…

With school just around the corner, so are all the GERMS that come with this time of year.  Fun times!  Generally speaking, most people reach for the bottle of Vitamin C if they feel a cold coming on this time of year, or to prepare in the event of a possible cold.  I am not saying that Vitamin C isn’t effective (as I do take it daily), but more and more studies are showing that Zinc has some very beneficial qualities when it comes to dealing with the common cold, also known as the rhinovirus.

Without going into great detail, and pulling multiple research studies at this time, some studies are showing that Vitamin C does not actually do much to prevent the common cold.  Sorry Airborne L.  Zinc, being the mineral that it is, seems to somehow interfere with the replication of the rhinovirus. Zinc influences the immune system in a few different ways.  Zinc helps the immune system recruit white blood cells for proper and better immune system function, helps reduce systematic inflammation in the body, and is also an antioxidant – not too shabby Mr. Zinc J.  Some studies that have also been done in the past few years have shown that people who started taking zinc after recently getting sick, had less severe symptoms from the cold, and the duration of the cold was not as long either.

Zinc is what they call a “trace element”.  The cells of our immune system rely on Zinc to function. If one is getting enough zinc into their diet, the T-cells and other immune cells in our bodies can be greatly affected.  Based on what Harvard Medical Researchers say, the suggested daily amount of Zinc is 15-25mg.  Taking in an excessive amount of this supplement can actually cause a reverse reaction on the body, and is usually best to follow the recommended daily amount, or the amount prescribed by your physician.

If you are a person interested in getting more Zinc into your diet naturally, chickpeas, kidney beans, mushrooms, crab and chicken, are all good sources of food where Zinc can be found.  Lozenges like Cold-Ez or syrups containing Zinc, can also help aid in support when you are not feeling well.  If you are a person who would prefer to supplement, or your doctor has told you to do so, Metagenics ( ) has a supplement called, Zinc A.G.  Zinc A.G. is a special formula with enhanced absorption to help better address zinc repletion in the body.  This is the brand I use, and that we carry or you can order at or through our office.  I do not necessarily take Zinc all year around, but I do use it through out certain parts of the year to help fight off pesky germs, and when I may be training at a higher intensity for something if needed.  I do not find that Zinc really has any bad side effects either, other than it doesn’t smell the greatest, and sometimes people complain of nausea.  If I don’t take my supplements with some type of food or little snack, I can become nauseous regardless of what supplement it is.  If you have any questions regarding Zinc or other supplements, please feel free to email me anytime at:  Happy Back to School everyone, and so not ready for the summer to come to an end!



Tips to Relieve Back Pain

Your first step should be to seek out professional help.  Whether you see your PCP, a Physical Therapist, an Orthopedic Physician, or a Chiropractic Physician, start by finding a professional trained to diagnose and treat back pain.  There are a multitude of factors that can cause back pain, and getting the proper diagnosis is the best place to start.  If you are looking for a non-invasive non-pharmacologic option, Chiropractic has shown in many studies to be statistically the best choice.


“Patients with chronic low-back pain treated by chiropractors showed greater improvement and satisfaction at one month than patients treated by family physicians. Satisfaction scores were higher for chiropractic patients. A higher proportion of chiropractic patients (56 percent vs. 13 percent) reported that their low-back pain was better or much better, whereas nearly one-third of medical patients reported their low-back pain was worse or much worse.”       

Nyiendo et al (2000), Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics


Keep moving.  Many PCP’s and Orthopedic Physicians recommend bed rest, but this can often make things worse.  We say every day to our patients, “Life is motion”.  We are designed to move each and every day.  Many of our patients tell us the prolonged sitting or standing they do is often their biggest contributor to their chronic back pain.  Let pain be your guide, any movement or motion that does not make your condition worse will usually help it get better sooner.  We find many times the cuase of the back pain are fixated vertebrae- that is they are not moving properly. These “fixations” can be caused by a multitude of factors, i.e. physical or emotional stress, some sort of trauma, poor posture, or even a poor diet can contribute to these vertebral “fixations”, which we refer to as “subluxations”.  Chiropractors are the only specialists that are trained specifically to locate and correct these vertebral subluxations.

If your chronic pain is related to emotional or work-related stress, try some relaxation techniques to help reduce muscle tension.  If your job or lifestyle requires lots of physical stress, make sure to use good posture and be sure to take stretch breaks often.

Exercise regularly- this helps in many ways: gets your spine moving; reduces stress; increases blood flow; and helps strengthen the muscles that support your spine.  What exercises are best for your back?  Well that may be different for each of us, but first find something you can currently do without pain, and make sure it is something you enjoy as you will be much more likely to stick with it.  My people find Yoga and/or swimming to help their chronic back pain, but as I mentioned earlier find what works best for you.  Make sure to warm up properly: including some foam rolling, then be sure to maintain good posture throughout your exercise, and be sure to stretch when you are done.

Get enough rest.  Make sure you have a good mattress to sleep on, and beware of your sleeping “posture” as well.  Avoid sleeping on your stomach as that can cause the neck and head to twist and put stress on your spine.  If you sleep on your back consider putting a pillow under your knees, and if you sleep on your side consider putting a pillow between your knees.

These are just a few more “tips” to help you improve your back pain.  If you have any questions about this Blog or about your health in general, please feel free to contact me at:




Postural Awareness Take 3…

So…I decided this month to follow up on postural awareness from the past two month’s newsletter articles.  Yes, there is a theme here, and I promise I wasn’t going to write about posture again, but a couple of things interested me and I wanted to follow through with them.

Now, some of you may think this is going to sound like a commercial, but I assure it is not.  I have been talking to my patients the past few months a lot about posture, and have come across a couple of different devices that I really like, and want to share with you (I should probably get some royalties from this article now that I think more about it as I am writing it, haha).

The first device I actually just ordered for my oldest stepson, is a postural awareness brace to wear across the upper back, by Primate Movement.  The website is  The device cost about $30.00, and I have seen a few different versions of this on Amazon as well, for those of you that have 2 Day Prime ;).  I actually just ordered one for myself to wear around the house as well.  It is best to wear over a tee-shirt to make sure no chafing occurs around the under arms.  There are Velcro straps that tighten in the front to help synch the shoulders into a better place, more posterior and inferior, or back and down for those of you trying to visualize what the brace does.  Some people have a lot of difficulty remembering on their own to be more aware of posture, so I am trying to come up with some other ideas to help them, or aid them.  I personally will most likely not wear it at the office because I move around too much, but those of you sitting at a desk all day; I would most definitely recommend this device.  The brace is not large at all, but if wearing it in the office, it will draw some attention.  I am not one of those people that is affected by that, but some people are, so with that is mind, I do have another option as well.

The second piece of equipment I also recommend is the Lumo.  The website is  The product is actually called the “Lumo Lift”.  The Lumo Lift is a little postural coach basically.  It also tracks activity and works with a free app to help one be more aware of their posture most of the day.  This device is small and lightweight.  It is an easy wearable solution, and not too flashy in the office.  It is a bit more expensive being just shy of $100, but could be well worth the while in regards to aiding in one’s posture and wellbeing.  The Lumo is worn near the clavicle (collarbone), and the device vibrates every time one slouches.  The sensors on the device can track one’s posture throughout the day, and even activity levels.  Being this device is a bit pricey, I am thinking this could be a device best used for the parents, and make the children the other more noticeable brace.  Just a thought!

Well, I hope this has been helpful to all of you.  As I find more interesting ways, ideas, and devices to help aid in better health and overall well-being, I will be sure to share them with you all.  If any of you have any questions about these two products, feel free to email me at,  Here is to a happier and healthy August and rest of the summer, Cheers

Need Energy? Want to Age More Gracefully?

Guest Blog:

This is Dr. Ken Reed, one of the founders of CellRegenX, a specially formulated supplement for cellular rejuvenation. The response to our introduction of CellRegenX at Performance Health Center has been great, and we have received many positive comments from our new and existing users. Performance Health Center is one of the few physical locations where CellRegenX can be purchased. We think nearly everyone can benefit from feeling more energetic, although with time, we are equally excited about the lengthening of telomeres demonstrated in those tested on CellRegenX. With the aging process, telomeres gradually get shorter, and CellRegenX seems to have a profound effect on the lengthening of telomeres. So what are the key ingredients behind CellRegenX? There are two naturally occurring substances formulated in a precise amount that are responsible for the beneficial effects we have observed. Please read further for additional scientific explanations, but warning… this can get a bit technical. 

Glycyrrhizic acid (licorice):

Licorice has known for its antiviral, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, laxative and hepatoprotective effects. Interestingly, licorice has been known used in Ayurveda medicine for rejuvenation. Licorice is also a very common ingredient of traditional Chinese medicine.  Aldosterone, and licorice which has the ability to mimic the effect of aldosterone in the human body, also has a known ability to lead to intracellular pH alkalization[i].

Cellregenx has 250 mg of licorice root. According to researched literature and our independent studies of human volunteers taking Cellregenx up to 21 months, this small amount of licorice taken daily is completely safe and does not affects hormonal levels.


In a large Japanese observational cohort, an inverse correlation between drinking water lithium concentrations and all causes of mortality in 18 neighboring Japanese municipalities with a total of 1,206,174 individuals was reported[ii].

Daily value of Lithium for human is not established yet, but most authors agree that the healthy adult diet should include about 1-2 milligram of Lithium daily (

Cellregenx has 1 mg of Lithium orotate, what can be considered as a supplementation of a “physiological” dose.  In humans defined lithium deficiency diseases have not been characterized, but low lithium intakes from water supplies were associated with increased rates of suicides, homicides and the arrest rates for drug use and other crimes (

Continuous administration of lithium leads to increased telomere length. Telomeres are protective DNA protein complexes at the ends of each chromosome, maintained primarily by the enzyme telomerase. Telomere shortening is also a hallmark of aging[iii], and has been associated with oxidative stress, inflammation and chronic somatic, as well as psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and depression. Taken together, these findings indicate that long-term low-dose exposure to lithium may exert anti- aging capabilities and unambiguously decreases mortality in evolutionary distinct species[iv].

Combination Compound:

CellRegenX is a combination of lithium and licorice at a certain stoichiometric ratio found to be optimal for shifting and maintaining alkaline pHi(intracellular pH) This combination compound results in increased mitochondrial respiration, enhanced telomeres lengths and longer life span in worms, and other markers of the aging process.

For those of you who have made it this far, congratulations, and we suggest you celebrate by trying a 30 day bottle of CellRegenX. We are confident your energy level will be enhanced, and we think your cells will appreciate the boost! Remember, aging is constant, and we all need all the help we can get.

For more information please visit

 [i]  San-E Ishikawa and T Saito The effect of glycyrrhetinic acid on the action of aldosterone in stimulating sodium transport in frog skin Endocrinologia japonica 27(6):697-701 · January 1981 DOI: 10.1507/endocrj1954.27.697.

[ii]Schrauzer GN (2002) Lithium: occurrence, dietary intakes, nutritional essentiality. J Am Coll Nutr 21:14–21.

[iii] Wei Y Bin, Backlund L, Wegener G, Mathé AA, Lavebratt C. Telomerase dysregulation in the hippocampus of a rat model of depression: normalization by lithium. Int J Neuropsychopharmacol. 2015;18(7):pyv002. doi:10.1093/ijnp/pyv002.


[iv] Schulz TJ, Zarse K, Voigt A, Urban N, Birringer M, Ristow M (2007) Glucose restriction extends Caenorhabditis elegans life span by inducing mitochondrial respiration and increasing oxidative stress. Cell Metab 6:280–293.




Longer Telomeres = Healthier & Longer Life!

Guest Blog:

We are delighted to introduce the Performance Health Center community to CellRegenX, a unique specially formulated nutraceutical developed by two local area physician researchers, to maximize cellular longevity, overall well-being, and athletic performance.

The scientific thesis behind CellRegenX is that as cells age, metabolic byproducts accumulate within the cell, which results in a gradual acidification of the intracellular pH (pHi). Older cells have a more acidic pH than younger, healthier cells. Most cellular functions are highly dependent on intracellular pH.  This pHi should not be confused with extracellular pH (the acidic or alkaline environment outside of the cell).

After testing numerous natural elements and compounds, we arrived upon a unique combination of natural ingredients, that alkalinizes the pHi just enough to mimic the pHi of younger, healthier cells.

These two components are lithium orotate and glycerrhizic acid. Together, in specific dosage, they are synergistic, producing results not seen with either ingredient alone.

The lithium concentration in CellRegenX is approximately 0.1% of the FDA approved dose of lithium carbonate used to treat mental diseases such as bipolar disorder. Li is found in low concentrations in drinking water, and in one epidemiological study, low levels of lithium in Japan’s drinking water were found to correlate with increased longevity. Glycerrhizic acid, is derived from licorice root, and has  been used medicinally for hundreds of years in many cultures.

To test our hypothesis, we conducted numerous scientific studies to determine just how CellRegenX would affect the commonly accepted biochemical markers of aging.

Remarkably, CellRegenX treated individuals showed a dramatic reduction in inflammation markers (which typically increase with age and degenerative diseases), an increase in mitochondrial activity (the engines of cellular energy), an increase in Collagen Type 3 (important for healthy looking skin) and elongation of telomeres (which normally shorten with aging).

Next we tested CellRegenX in a species of worms, C. Elegans which has a short lifespan rendering it a good model for longevity products. Those worms receiving CellRegenX had on average a 40% lengthening of their lifespan.

We are now into month 9 in our animal (mice) studies, and expect it will be another  2 plus years before this animal data is available, since a mouse’s life span is between two and three years.

CellRegenX has been clinically used now by humans for well over a year.

We have seen fairly consistent reports of increased energy and exercise performance, decreased need for sleep, decrease in appetite, increase in sexual  desire, increased ability to focus, improved dream state, improved bowel function, and overall favorable mood.

We do not recommend CellRegenX be taken by children under the age of 18, adults with underlying physical or mental illness, those with known allergies to its ingredients, or pregnant or nursing mothers. It is also recommended that one consult their physician or health care provider before consuming nutraceutical products in general.

Please the CellRegenX website for more information:


It’s Summer and I’m Back on the Courts!

For several months in a row last spring I wrote about my experiences post-knee surgery and the grueling rehab process I was going through.  It’s hard to believe that is now over one year post-surgery.  The good news is that I am back doing all the activities I was able to do prior to my ACL tear and surgical replacement!

I’ve never had a serious injury before and never had to be a committed and compliant patient.  I worked hard and followed the advice of the skilled professional that I put my trust in.  I was able to ski by mid- winter and since the spring have been playing tennis several times a week.  My knee is strong and pain-free.  I have no limitations.  At times I do get swelling, but regular icing keeps it to a minimum (and feels good on these hot summer days we are experiencing).  I know I am not 100% rehabbed, but am getting closer every day!

This has been a learning experience on many levels.  Most importantly, I have a much better appreciation for the trust and confidence my patients put in me.  It is not easy being compliant with appointments and the homework I prescribe to get out of pain and optimizing function.  Between family and work responsibilities we all have busy lives.  Squeezing in one more appointment is not always easy.  I always remind my patients that it is not easy and there is never the right time to do this, but if they do the work now, they will be glad they did short term, and more importantly long term.

George Burns when he turned 90 said, “If I knew I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself”.  I want all my patients to say when they turn 90, “I knew I was going to live this long so I took great care of myself”.   Of course there are bumps in the road, like my knee injury, and when that happens extra care is needed.  That’s how I live my life and I hope I inspire my patients to do the same.

Now that the hard part of my rehab is over, I will continue with my “extra” exercises to make sure my knee serves me well for the many years I plan to work as a chiropractor and play hard.  Many thanks go to my team of professionals who helped me get to this place.  Dr. Brian McKeon has been my go to orthopedist for 14+ years.  I’ve always told my patients when I made a referral, if it was me, Dr. McKeon is who I would go to.  When it was me that is exactly what I did.  Steve Crowell and his amazing team of physical therapists at Rebound Physical Therapy got me moving.  Rebound Physical Therapy is my “outsourced” physical therapy department and they always make me look good when I refer my patients there.  Drs. VanNederynen and Ball, were instrumental in keeping me functional and relieved the physical stress I was putting on my body from walking funny- 1st with crutches, then with my brace, and then from limp that lasted longer than I expected.  Bernadette, Performance Health Center’s amazing massage therapist accelerated my healing with incredible massages and cupping.  Lastly, Anita Luck, my Functional Movement Therapist, has taught me how to use my body in 3-D so my body can handle the demands I put on it, even when the unexpected happens.

I have and will continue to refer my patients to these exceptional providers I have now experienced firsthand, and have even more confidence in them than ever.

I hope you all have an enjoyable, safe and healthy summer!  Now get out there and have fun!

Brad Weiss, D.C.



Postural Awareness, Part 2

Hello All!!! As promised, I am following up in regards to the last article I wrote about posture…

First and foremost, it can be difficult to know if you have good or bad posture sometimes.  I highly suggest consulting with a reputable and well educated Massage Therapist, Physical Therapist, Chiropractor, Structural Therapist, Functional Movement Specialist, or Physiatrist if you are unsure of your posture, or more importantly, concerned about your posture.

There is a lot more that goes into maintaining proper posture then you think.  You need to have sufficient muscle strength and flexibility.  There also needs to be normal or adequate joint motion in the spine and extremity joints, as well as efficient and balanced postural muscles along both sides of the spine and the core region.  To make corrections working towards better posture, you must recognize your own postural habits, both at home, the work place, and any other time for that matter.

Bad postural habits can lead to an excessive amount of strain on the postural muscles.  The bad habits can even cause these muscles to stretch and weaken over time.  These postural muscles then become more prone to injury and back pain.  There are many factors that contribute to bad posture; stress, obesity, weak core stabilizing muscles, pregnancy, and overly tight musculature just to name a handful.  Lack of flexibility, poor working conditions, incorrect working posture, or unhealthy amounts of sitting and standing also contribute to bad posture.

A good question frequently asked, or a good question to ask yourself is, can I correct my posture?  The answer is yes, BUT it isn’t always an easy task.  The longer standing bad posture is, the longer it can take to correct due to the joints adjusting to bad postural habits over time.  There has to be a conscious effect on your own, and understanding what correct posture is, and much practice to gradually replace your old and bad postural habits. Focusing on the way you sit, stand, and lay down will only help you move towards a better and healthier you.

Before wrapping up this little lecture about posture, I will leave you all with a few tips in regards to sitting, standing, and proper lying position.

When sitting, don’t cross your legs.  Your ankles should be below or slightly in front of your knees.  Keep your feet on the floor or a footrest.  Your knees should be at the height or level of your hips, or just slightly below.  The back rest of your chair should set between the low and mid back.  There should be a small gap between the back of your knees and the front of your seat.  Keep your shoulders relaxed.  Forearms should be parallel to the ground.  Try to avoid sitting in one position too long.  I tell my patients this all the time!  They must think I am the “nagging mom”, LOL.

When standing, try and bear your weight evenly on the balls of your feet.  Your knees should be ever so slightly bent, and your feel should be about shoulder width apart.  Try and stand straight and tall, with your shoulders pulled back, but letting your arms hang naturally along the sides of your body.  Engage or tuck your stomach muscles in slightly.  Also try to keep your head level.  Focus on your earlobes being in align with your shoulders.  And, when standing for periods of time, try and shift your weight from side to side or toes to heels.

Finally, when lying down, find the mattress and pillow that is right for you! Do NOT sleep on your stomach, I mean it!  Sleeping on your back is the best, on your side is second best.  If you are trying to transition to sleeping in one of these two positions, try sleeping with a pillow underneath your knees or in between your knees.

We as chiropractors are here to assist you, and recommend exercises, stretches, and give you tips to improve your posture and strengthen these core muscles.  We can also help recommend proper postural techniques during activity, as well as help reduce your chance of injury.

Well, there you have it folks!  If you have any other questions, feel free to email me at,  Always happy to try and help you and your family lead a healthier and more active lifestyle.



What is Posture?

What is Posture?  This sounds like such a simple question, but so many people actually do not know how to simply state the definition of posture.  I was teaching a couple of classes last week during Wellness Week at Wayland Middle School, and Posture was the primary topic, aside from what is health, and what is chiropractic etc.  I was surprised, well…not really, at how many students in the one class could not give a good definition of what posture is.  Now, this may have also been some of the 8th graders being too cool for school just not wanting to participate, but none the less, it got me thinking.  When in the office the following day I started asking patients of all ages what the word posture means, and come to find out, many of them couldn’t answer the question much better than some of the 8th graders that week.  Hence, why I am writing this month about Posture, and next month as well (no surprises in June people, sorry)!

I cringe daily looking around at people and their postural habits, mostly bad habits that is.  I am also talking all ages here, not just the younger population that has become technologically challenged in regards to posture with the overstimulation of IPADS, SMART PHONES, and COMPUTERS.  Never mind the inability to have an actual conversation with another person face to face without one of these devices attached at their hip, or hands, but how about what it is doing their posture?

Okay, now that I have gotten that off my chest, I am sure you are all clenching at your seats wanting to know what Posture actually means…are you sitting down for this?  Well, maybe you should be standing instead, lol.  Drum roll please…straight out of the dictionary…Posture is the position in which we hold our bodies while standing, sitting, or lying down.  This isn’t rocket science folks, but sometimes the simplest definitions can be the hardest ones to grasp.  More importantly regarding the definition of Posture, it is important to maintain good posture for good health. So, the more important definition then Posture, is “Good Posture”.

Good Posture is the correct alignment of the body parts by the right amount of muscle tension against gravity.  If we did not have posture and the muscles that control it, we would just fall down.  Usually, normal posture is a subconscious thing, and we do not even realize we are doing it, which is pretty cool actually.  When our postural muscles are working properly, they help prevent the forces of gravity from pushing us over, or too far forward, or too far backward.  Postural muscles also help us maintain our balance and posture during movement, not just sitting, standing, or lying down.  Good posture helps us to do all of these things and place the least amount of strain on supporting muscles and ligaments during movement and weight bearing exercises.

Good or Correct Posture helps keep bones and joints in correct alignment so that our muscles are used correctly, decreasing abnormal wear and tear of joint surfaces, that guess what, result in ARTHRITIS over time!  For some (BUT NOT ALL) of those people and patients out there that cannot figure out why they have arthritic changes in their body and don’t remember ever doing anything to cause it, bingo! Correct Posture also reduces stress on the ligaments holding the spinal joints together, hopefully minimizing injury to happen.  Correct Posture also allows the muscles to work more efficiently, helping to allow the body to use less energy, and prevent muscle fatigue.  This also helps to prevent muscle strain, overuse conditions, and even back and muscular pain.

For all of my more active patients out there and athletes, posture plays a VERY crucial role in how one moves during daily life and activities, performs or competes.  I bet you don’t see someone with the worst rounded middle and upper back, and rolled forward shoulders snatching (snatch, a very technical Olympic lift for those of you that do not know) more than someone with good posture that is of equal strength or capabilities.

This is a lot of information to take in that I have written in this article here.  I want all of you to really take the time to think about what I have written, and how does having better posture pertain to you and your life, and what you do.  Maybe it means having better posture so you are less likely to have pain as you get older.  That way you can spend more time with your kids playing in the backyard and playing sports with them.  Maybe you are training for a 5k, 10K, ½ marathon, marathon, triathlon, IronMan, or CrossFit competition, and good posture is absolutely a necessity for these types of things, during training, competing at your best, and preventing injury.

Next month I will be discussing how to know if you have good or bad posture, maintaining good posture, consequences of poor posture, correcting posture sitting, standing and lying down, and who can help you to have better postural habits.  So, stay tuned! If you have any questions in the meantime, contact me at,, or your own chiropractor, massage therapist, or physical therapist for help or advice in regards to your postural habits.  Happy May everyone!