It’s worse than you think

Dr. Tony NSA

In July of this year a study was published in the Journal of Sport Rehabilitation in which Forward Head Posture (FHP) was shown to affect information processing and integration and less efficient skill-related physical fitness. Why this is important to note is because often as we age, we think that our bodies are not keeping up like they used to and it must be “because we’re getting older”. And with thinking this can come a feeling of resignation, that there’s nothing we can do about it.

Timing is the most important factor when it comes to integrating information in the brain. In order to make sense of our world, such as how far away is that car and how fast is it travelling, to how low is that step that I’m about to take, the signals that converge in the brain including visual, kinaesthetic, as well as estimating distances etc. must converge at the same time in order to successfully process the information.

If one or two of the signals is held up for just a few milliseconds, this delay causes hesitancy in action which can lead to falls, accidents and injuries. And that’s just from a physical sense. If you factor in emotional signals and being able to read a situation or person, problems with information processing can cause relational tension, misunderstanding even arguments. Mentally, your thinking has to slow down in order to accommodate the delay in information processing. This can show up as a delay in seeing or hearing and the recognition of what is seen or heard.

Information processing and integration could be considered the “input” side of things. The “output” would include balance and coordination. Balance and coordination may be seen to decrease in general as we age but that doesn’t mean that it directly has to do with how old your are.

This is why one of our objective measures that we use in our examinations, is to measure Forward Head Posture. We know that as FHP decreases, balance, coordination, improved information processing are just some of the benefits that people see.

Addressing FHP isn’t just about not having bad posture or text neck. It’s about your ability to process information and to respond and adapt. Your health depends on it!

Get used to it, or not
Practice doesn't make perfect