How to keep good posture while studying

Make sure you pay attention to how you sit while you're studying or working on your computer. Your neck and back will thank you for it.

Person sitting at a desk facing a sunlit window. TL/DR: Don't sit like this when you're studying. (Photo:

Keeping good posture is really important for back and neck health, and as students it’s really easy to forget about this during long study sessions. These tips will not only help you have good posture but will also help you release tension from your muscles and improve your productivity.


1. Finding your ideal posture

When you’re about to sit down at your desk to study, sit on the edge of the chair and slouch your head and your shoulders forward. Then pull your head and shoulders into the tallest position you can, pushing your lower back forwards. This position feels uncomfortable but try to hold it for a few seconds. Then take a deep breath and release this position slightly. You have found your correct posture!

After this, slide back into your chair and make sure your back has complete support and that your hips are at the bend of the chair. This way you’ll ensure you take care of your back.


2. Adjust your chair

To adjust your chair so it’s in the correct setting for you, sit down and make sure your legs are parallel with the floor while your knees and hips are at an even height. It’s also important that your feet are completely resting on the floor. This way your weight is evenly distributed and your back and hips will be relaxed.


3. Keep your screen at eye level

Make sure the top border of your computer is no more than two inches above or below your eye level. This will help to reduce neck strain from looking too far up or to far down. If you don’t have a computer stand, you can use your older textbooks to regulate the height of your computer and/or monitor.


4. Try to keep constantly used objects close

If there’s anything you use extremely often—like your computer mouse, a highlighter, or your favourite pen—try keeping them as close to you as possible. This will reduce your stretching to reach that object which can cause too much painful stress on your back muscles.


5. Take regular breaks

It can be easy to forget to take breaks when you have too much work to do that you’re focusing on for hours at a time. However, these short breaks can help you be more efficient and keep you from being in the same position for too long which can cause your back to feel tired and sore. Some exercises you can do during these short breaks are:

  • Calf raises: These will help you pump your blood back to your heart.
  • Neck stretches: These will help you release tension from your neck and your shoulders.
  • Walking: Try to stand up and move away from your computer or your desk. Even just 2 minutes every hour will help you refresh your mind and relax your body.  A great way to do this is by drinking water. Drinking water while studying will not only help make sure that you are properly hydrated but it will also remind you to take a bathroom break.