December 16, 2022 3 min read
There are many factors that affect the academic performance of students today. Study habits, work, family background, and finances are just some of them. However, good posture is also a critical contributor to academic performance that is less often thought about. Good posture affects academic performance in various ways, such as decreased neck and back pain, increased energy, or improved learning. Before the academic benefits of good posture are discussed, the question, “What is good posture?” must be answered.
What is good posture? Depending on whom you ask, you’ll likely get a wide variety of answers. Generally, good posture is thought of as sitting or standing upright without a straight back and no slouch, but is that all it really is? The Mayfield Clinic in Cincinnati, Ohio, gives five requirements for proper posture: good muscle flexibility, normal motion in the joints, strong postural muscles, a balance of muscles on both sides of the spine, and an awareness of your own posture, as well as awareness of what good posture is (Mayfield Clinic). So what do these requirements look like when they are all put together? When sitting at a desk, your feet should be flat on the floor while your knees and elbows are resting at a comfortable 90-degree angle.
Setup-wise, the computer monitor should be set to eye level, while the computer mouse should be located close enough to allow the elbow to remain bent while in use. Now that we know what constitutes good posture, we can take a closer look at just how good posture affects the academic performance of students.
The neck and back pain that comes with bad posture can lead to poor sleep, lack of focus, and poor overall mood. Decreased neck and back pain is a well-known benefit of good posture. Sitting and standing with good posture keeps bones and joints in alignment, reducing the stress on the joints; ligaments and allowing muscles to work more efficiently. Beyond limiting the adverse effects that come with poor posture, good posture can lead to less fatigue.
Adding on to the previously discussed neck and back pain, bad posture can frequently cause students to become fatigued due to the strain on the muscles. Good posture combats this, leading to less fatigue and improved focus (Mayo Clinic). Last but certainly not least, good posture can play a significant role in enhancing learning. By implementing good posture, students pay attention and
are more engaged with the material being taught to them (Lavoie). This increased engagement, combined with the benefits that come from reduced pain and fatigue, leads to students being able to better learn and understand the material, thereby improving academic performance.
It would be a mistake to overlook the importance of proper posture’s effect on academic performance. Proper poster affects the academic performance of students in a variety of ways: alleviated back and neck pain that gives students the gateway to improved sleep, focus, and overall mood; decreased fatigue; and increased engagement are only a small proportion of them.
All of these benefits play major roles in leading to an improvement in academic performance in students. Improving academic performance begins with good posture, and students should be sure not to forget it.
Lavoie, Martina. “What’s the Connection between Posture and Learning?” GradePower Learning, 21 Dec. 2021, gradepowerlearning.com/whats-the-connection-between-posture-andlearning/#:~:text=Good%20posture%20and%20mindful%20movement.
Mayfield Clinic. “Posture & Body Mechanics.” Mayfieldclinic.com, Dec. 2018,mayfieldclinic.com/pe-posture.htm.
Mayo Clinic. “Posture Tips to Prevent Back Pain.” Mayo Clinic, 22 June 2021,
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