Advice on Posture and Back Pain - Shape Seating

Advice on Posture and Back Pain

What makes a bad posture?

  • Any position that exerts undue strain on the musculoskeleton:

Ergonomics involves principles of biomechanics, physiology, even sociology and psychology, but the essence is simple: Design the task/equipment to the human and minimise the factors that influence bad posture.

What factors influence bad posture?

  • Design of equipment

  • Design of the task

  • Frequency/repetition of task

Bad posture can be affected by almost anything, and it is the role of ergonomics to design equipment and design tasks that fit the capabilities and stature of the human body. Asking a man of 5 feet to place a heavy object on a high shelf repetitively for a long time is going to result in a bad posture. Asking a person to sit in a chair that is too small for them is going to result in poor posture.

Despite what our teachers said about putting in maximum effort, when it comes to our posture, we should be performing tasks with the minimum effort.

What makes good posture?


When the body is relaxed, with all the muscles and tendons in a resting state, then it could be said to be a good posture. But can we ever achieve a neutral posture when we are working? Unfortunately not. Whether involved in hard physical labour, or sitting at a computer, our muscles are always working, even if they are not moving. This 'work' exerts force and strain on our musculoskeleton, and it is the extent of strain that determines the effects on the body.

What can be done to improve posture?

  • Better Equipment

  • Training

For specific advice on back pain and other musculoskeletal disorders we would suggest the following website: BUPA

For more help and advice please call us on 01629 814656.