This last Sunday I went to a yoga class filled with a variety of people.  Regardless of where you are at in life, the instructor gave the most simple and wholesome advice: know your body.

It’s by knowing where you are strongest, where you have ached in the past, how you sleep every night, what your job tasks require, where your mind wanders.

By knowing yourself, recognizing and being aware, we are able to evaluate and eventually bring changes.

This leads me to my right shoulder. Over the past… 10 years… I have had on and off pain at my shoulder which has affected my posture and ability to walk long distances before experiencing pain. I know this of myself and at times I appreciate it and make changes and at other times, I carry a very large beach bag filled with books, drinks, laptops, etc. while wearing chintzy flip flops.

Up until this point it has just been minor pain.  I do know that if it were to continue it could lead to: restricted blood flow, numbness, tingling, stiffness, well just overall pressure on nerves.

As a reminder to you and myself, here are some strategies on maintaining ergonomic awareness:

  • Buy different sized purses for different occasions.  A small one for a quick run to the store or smaller occasions & a book bag for longer trips. Be cautious of larger totes that are easily filled.
  • Built in compartments help – it evenly distributes weight. I currently have smaller bags (i.e. le sac) holding make up, pens or misc. items that I can take out or add in based on where I’m going.
  • Use quality materials – materials that will hold up and are inviting to take out. Preferably as lightweight as possible.
  • Switch positions: long handle to short handle to across the chest. Adjustable straps are key here. This lets muscles get a break in-between.
  • Avoid doing the shoulder shrug – distribute weight evenly by picturing your back as a square and maintaining more upright posture.

Drop that purse if you can.  A) set it down along those shopping trips B) just leave it at home.

GIG DESIGN | Physical Lifestyle


DESIGN^joint & muscle | In the context of relationship to time: do you need to carry everything with you to where your going? Simplify when possible.


DESIGN^joint & muscle | A convertible strap bag for any occupation – work, play, leisure – and gender.


DESIGN^joint & muscle | In sense of knowing your body capacities distribute the weight of your goods on your body.



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