Wearing a back brace isn’t exactly the fashion statement you imagine. But for those who want to feel well more than or as much as they look good, a form of bracing is available.
Meet the posture corrector. Whether you have a chronic condition, such as scoliosis, or want to improve poor posture, this device can help you align your body parts, including your shoulders and spine.
Do posture correcting devices work? What are they anyway? How do you use them? These are some of the questions we’ll answer in this article.
Table of Contents
- Posture Corrector 101
- Do Posture Correctors Work Long Term?
- Are Posture Correctors Any Good?
- Do Back Braces Really Help Posture?
- How Do You Wear Posture Correctors?
Posture Corrector 101
A posture corrector, posture brace, or posture supporter is a piece of garment tailored for wearing on your upper body – over or under your clothes. It is designed to pull back your shoulders and lift your chest, allowing for the spine to move into its neutral position. Wearing this device for several hours can allow the muscles to adapt to good posture.
Let’s look at how it works in detail:
How Do Posture Correctors Work?
Good posture involves the correct alignment of the neck, shoulders, and spine. It also relies on the right amount of muscle tension against gravity. The habit of hunching or slouching can create muscular imbalances. But sometimes, you may experience weak or tight muscles because of an injury or illness, which you may be predisposed to have.
Getting into proper posture can help relieve the discomfort, pain, and other problems brought about by these issues. Yet, for most people, it’s hard to keep sitting or standing upright on their own. This is where the posture correction device comes in.
Posture supporters can deal with muscular imbalances regardless of the cause. A piece of this equipment can encourage you to rotate your arms and pull your shoulders backward instead of rounding them. This way, your spine is driven into its natural position as well. Even 30 minutes a day of holding this position can make a difference.
The device can aid in maintaining the correct posture for a few hours. It will not only align your neck, shoulders, and chest but also stretch the chest or front muscles while shortening your upper back muscle a bit. Over time, your body can adapt to this new conditioning. You will have built muscle memory and won’t need to wear the brace anymore.
Do note that there are other ways to achieve good posture. Remembering how to sit properly, exercising, and even sleeping with your spine supported in its neutral alignment can work. But using a posture supporter can expedite the process of retraining your muscles.
Types of Posture Correctors
Cross-Back Elastic Brace
Supporting your collarbone, chest, and back is this wearable brace that is wrapped around your back. You can wear it comfortably under your clothes. It delivers light support, so it’s good for those who want to push their chest backward, preventing the weight of your breasts from pulling your front side forward.
You can purchase this on your favorite online marketplace or at your therapist’s office.
Molded Upper Back Brace
Close in design and application to the above is the molded brace. This type also fits the upper part of your back but sports a vertical piece of metal or plastic that sits between your shoulder blades. It appears bulky and uncomfortable when worn for longer hours. Yet, it has more power than the elastic version to counteract hunching or slouching attempts.
You can choose to wear it at home and remove it when you’re going out in public.
Longline Back Brace
Among the options, this one has the widest coverage. It runs from the base of your neck to the top of your hip. You don it like you would a vest, so it’s totally visible. This construction means it is made to give firmer support to your entire back. It is essentially designed for those who have major alignment issues, as well as lower back pain.
You can adjust its settings to customize use.
Electronic Posture Reminder
Instead of a garment like the other three, the electronic posture reminder is a wearable device. It can be attached in two ways. It can be hooked onto your bra via a clip or connected to your skin in the back with a built-in adhesive.
It will vibrate once it detects slouching, prompting you to straighten up. It also comes with an app that acts as a tracker and stat provider.
Benefits of Posture Correctors
Getting hunched over your desk, slouching, and rounding your shoulders are some of the common signs of bad posture. Remembering to sit or stand up straight can help improve posture. But doing it manually may not be the most effective way. With posture correctors, you can train and strengthen your back muscles to maintain an upright position, promoting good posture.
In connection to that, you can also bet on this garment for the following benefits:
Lessen Pressure on Spine
When you’re sitting upright, the hips and knees are almost at the same level, and your abdomen is tight. The latter happens because you’re shifting most of the weight from your spine to your core.
Promote Healing and Recovery
Patients who have a neck injury, such as whiplash, can be prescribed to wear posture support. Those who have problems with their spinal disks, as well as spinal degeneration such as osteoarthritis, may use it as well.
Strengthen Back Muscles
When you settle into the proper posture, your back muscles contract as your chest muscles lengthen. You are now increasing your range of motion until your muscles become used to the new position. In time, your tissues and joints will adapt as well. When that happens, you may no longer need to wear the brace or only wear it shortly.
Expedite Posture Correction
Some say that it will only take 3 to 4 days to achieve posture correction with a posture supporter. But if you do it manually, it will take you weeks. While the body is adaptable, it may indeed help if you have a device that can remind and retrain you to align your upper body parts, letting your spine fall into its natural position and relieving the pressure off your back muscles.
Do Posture Correctors Work Long Term?
Yes, they do. If you use them according to the manufacturer’s specifications, you can enjoy the long-term benefits of wearing a posture corrector. So, let’s say, the product says to wear the brace for 14 consecutive days. When you follow the instructions, you are allowing it to build muscle memory while improving posture. This, in turn, can have a lasting impact.
It’s like cultivating a habit. You need time to make it a part of your system. Once it works, you can do it by default.
Are Posture Correctors Any Good?
Like any product, there are the best and worst versions. Looking at the factors that differentiate the excellent performers from the lousy ones is essential. Check for the construction and materials, comfort and fit, visibility when worn under clothes, price, and value for money. Better to buy something that is not dirt cheap but can serve results.
Do Back Braces Really Help Posture?
The main job of a posture supporter is to counteract your tendency to hunch or slouch. It does this by pulling the shoulders backward and aligning the spine. The spine is, then, put in its neutral position, which is the default of good posture. Considering this case, the answer is yes. A posture corrector can really help.
How Do You Wear Posture Correctors?
Fashionably. But seriously, if you have any of the first three types mentioned earlier, you need to wear them as you would your clothes. You can put them on top of or under your clothes, depending on their type. If you are using the electronic version, you can stick it on your skin or hook it on your bra, if you use this undergarment.
Correcting posture has become an acceptable practice in modern times. That’s largely due to poor posture giving us a lot of pain and related physical problems. On top of that, we want to protect our spine as much as possible.
Many posture correcting products exist to deliver this kind of solution and assist you in maintaining the best posture that helps you fight back pain. However, there are different types for different needs and preferences. So, take note of the options to see which one is the most suitable for you.
If you are wondering: Do posture correctors work, and do they work for the long term? The answer is yes. The best ones do. But the performance depends on the brand and model you choose. Not everyone can effectively provide you with the health benefits that can come from this device. So, choose wisely.
One more thing to remember: wear the brace well. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to make the most out of this device. It can be the one that enhances your health and corrects your posture for good.