“Text Neck” is real. Here’s how to combat it.
In this day and age, it has become all too common to spend lengthy periods of time staring at a screen, whether it be for work, checking your social media, or playing games on your phone. What most people don’t realize is this position (picture: head down, shoulders slouched) is bad for your posture – so bad, that it’s even been named: “text neck.”
Let’s put it more into perspective. Studies have shown that for every ONE inch your head is forward in posture, it increases your head’s weight on the spine by TEN pounds. Looking down at your phone typically puts about 40-60 extra pounds of pressure on your spine. Try doing it now and think about it. You can actually feel the extra pressure. The average person spends 4 hours a day looking at their mobile device like this. In case you hadn’t guessed it yet, constantly staring down at your phone is BAD! Even if you don’t feel the repercussions of this habit yet, the aches and pains are likely coming.
Here at Mobile Initiative, we live and breathe technology. Just like you, we are constantly on our computers and phones to complete our daily tasks. However, we aren’t big fans of “text neck” and want our customers to enjoy using devices like their Valor Android smartphones without damaging their spines.
So, for all of those who absolutely cannot live without your daily games of Candy Crush, constantly checking your Facebook, or answering emails all day, we are here to give you a few tips on how to improve both your posture and phone usage.
- Be conscious of your posture
While at your desk, be sure to position your arms 90 degrees at your keyboard with shoulders back and back straight. Being cognizant of your posture is an essential habit to form to ensure those pesky aches and pains stay out of your life for as long as possible.
- TAKE BREAKS!
Leave your desk and work behind for a bit and take a walk. Not only is it good to give your neck, eyes and back a break, but it’s also a good opportunity to step back and give your mind some rest too. Studies show that those who take breaks to clear their head tend to be more productive in their work.
- Elevate your work space
Make sure that your computer is elevated. You can do this by adjusting your monitor or chair at a stationary desk or purchase a computer elevation stand (there are plenty of very affordable options on Amazon). That way you have no option but to look up at your screen instead of down.
- Change how you hold your phone
One of the most difficult things to do is break a bad habit. Even the best of us struggle with this one. It’s easy to forget and get stuck in your old way holding your phone in your lap and staring down at it. However, simply staying conscious of your body position while using electronics can be effective if you keep it up long enough! Make it the standard, not the exception.
- Bonus – Stretches and exercises to combat “text neck”
These are a few quick and easy physician-recommended exercises proven to help balance your posture and settle neck pain that can be cause by excessive electronic usage.
Although the effects of bad technology posture don’t yield immediate results, it is important to start beneficial habits and end hazardous ones.
This post was written by Leah Thompson, Marketing Intern at Mobile Initiative.