Upright.Poster.EditedbySDC 3.13.17 .pdf

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Posture Change Feedback Training and its Effect on Health
Shane Colombo, Monica Joy, Lauren Mason, Erik Peper, Richard Harvey, & Annette Booiman
San Francisco State University



• Average changes in measures of posture, health, and well-being
(see Figure 2)
• Posture awareness (M = 2.27)
• Sadness (M = -0.81)
• Confidence (M = 1.45)
• Laziness (M = -0.72)
• Happiness (M = 1.09)
• Weakness (M = -0.72)
• Productivity (M = 1.09)
• Negativity (M = -0.72)
• Positivity (M = 1.09)

n=5, Aged 19-21, Four females, One male
Procedures: 3-week duration
• Subjects instructed to use the device for minimum 15 min/day (all at
once, or in different intervals)
• Subjects used logs to record:
• Total amount of times/day they noticed slouching
• Daily mood, confidence, pain, energy, and anxiety levels on a
1-10 scale
• Revised version of the SF-36 Survey by RAND® Health given at the
beginning and end of the study (see Figure 5)
• Subjective experience recorded at the end of the study utilizing an
open-response questionnaire


Figure 9: Daily Confidence Levels via Self-Report Logs (n=5)

• Average Overall Experience with the UpRight: 9.2/10 rating
• Subjects experienced • “better memory retention, more confidence, more energy, less
depressive thoughts”,
• “improved self-esteem”,
• “more motivation”
• “feeling more clear-headed”
- as a result of use of the device.

• Question: How does posture influence our health and wellbeing?
• Collapsed Posture is associated with depressive memory
bias, failure-related emotions, lower subjective energy,
lower confidence and back, neck, and shoulder pain
(Canales et al., 2010; Michalak et al., 2014)
Fig 2. Averages scores from final survey on assessments of mood, pain, and posture

Changes in Health and Well-Being
(Week 1 - Post-Experiment Survey)

• UpRight (www.uprightpose.com) is a wearable device that:.

11 female students (M = 26 yrs; SD = 10)
Week 1:
• Survey (S1) administered on three separate days
• Mood, posture, and physical pain measured
• Subjects received training for upright device
Week 2:
• Instructed on using UpRight device
• Trained 30 min/day for 3 days
• New survey (S2) administered on days of training
• Replicated measures from S1
• Also recorded thoughts, emotions, and behaviors associated
with collapsed posture during and after training
• Devices returned at the end of week
Week 3:
• New survey (S3) administered on three separate days
• Replicated measures from S1
• Also recorded thoughts, emotions, and behaviors
• associated with collapsed posture throughout the day
Final survey (see Figure 1):
• Administered 1 week following completion of study
• Single assessment of mood, posture, and physical pain relative
from the beginning of the study until the end of the study.

Fig 1. Final survey, administered one week after the end of study

All subjects showed:
• Positive improvement (as evaluated by the revised SF-36 Survey by
RAND® Health) in emotional well-being, energy/fatigue, pain, social
functioning, role limitations due to emotional problems, and overall
health (see Figure 6 and 7).












Fig 3. Percent change in self-reported surveys scores after Upright intervention per
category for subjects who showed the greatest positive change

Awareness of Posture






• In Study 2, we replicated these findings and introduced a more
robust measure of health (SF-36) to support the validity of our
previous findings.

• Moving forward, it is recommended that health practitioners
consider the implementation of the UpRight device in a clinical
setting for the treatment of anxiety disorders, for which other
methods aimed at increasing mindfulness have already shown
promise. (Vollestad et al., 2012)



• In Study 1, we demonstrated that the UpRight device intervention
yielded positive increases in awareness of posture, emotional wellbeing, and decreases in pain symptoms.

• Together, our results suggest that the integration of a posture
training device and ecological measurements of emotional wellbeing and health can influence how mindful users are toward factors
that modulate their posture and in-turn, their health. The UpRight
device, like many other forms of wearable biofeedback technology,
can be integrated in one’s daily life and has potential to be used in
the clinical setting as well.

Health Improvements after UpRight




Week 2 (Posture Training Week)

Final Survey (Post-Experiment)



Emotional Well-Being

Social Functioning


General Health

Overall Health Score



Figure 4. Difference in average posture awareness from time of intervention until the end of
the study

• Behavioral changes as a result of increased posture awareness:
• Holding phone at eye-level
• Placing an item behind self while seated
• Being aware of posture at mealtime
• Working at a desk versus a bed
• Taking computer breaks
• Wearing proper eye-wear for computer use
“I have been using the Upright device for a few weeks now. I mostly
use the device while studying at my desk and during class. I have
found that it helps me stay focused at my desk for longer periods of
time. Knowing there is something monitoring my posture helps to
keep me sitting longer because I want to see how long I can keep an
upright posture. While studying, I have found whenever I become
frustrated, tired, or when my mind begins to wander, I slouch. The
Upright device then vibrates and I become aware of these feelings
and thoughts, and can quickly correct them. This device has
improved my posture, created awareness, and increased my overall
study time.”

Subject 1

Subject 2

Subject 3

Subject 4

• The UpRight device provides instantaneous feedback on posture,
facilitating an intentional shift in its users which may ultimately lead
to positive health improvements over time.

Subject 5


Figure 6: Percent change in SF-36 RAND® Health Survey scores after UpRight
intervention per subject, per category (n=5). Note: “Role limitations due to emotional
problems” category was not able to be included in the graph; Subjects 1, 3, 4 showed
infinite positive percent change in this category and Subjects 2,5 showed no change

Overall Health Score Before and After
UpRight Intervention

0 = worst, 100 = best


Percentage Change

• Using the UpRight device to improve posture will lead to
positive changes in emotional state, decreased pain
symptoms, and upright posture over the course of three




• Promotes mindfulness towards thoughts and behaviors
associated with collapsed posture

Fig 5. Portion of the SF-36 Survey by RAND® Health on physical and emotional well-being



• Trains users to correct their posture by providing vibratory
feedback when slouching



Percentage Change

• Upright Posture is associated with increases in
confidence, performance, self-image, subjective energy and
less pain. (Thrasher et al., 2011; Wilson & Peper, 2004)

Figure 8: Awareness of Collapsing via Self-Report Logs (n=5)












Subject 5

Subject 4

Overall Score (before)

Subject 3

Subject 1

Subject 2

Overall Score (after)

Figure 7: SF-36 Rand Health Survey Overall Health Score Per Subject, Before and After
UpRight Intervention

Canales, J. Z., Cordas, T. A., Fiquer, J. T., Cavalcante, A. F., & Moreno, R. A. (2010). Posture and body I
mage in individuals with major depressive disorder: A controlled study. Revista brasileira de
psiquiatria, 32(4), 375-380.
Michalak J., Mischnat J. and Teismann T. (2014). Sitting Posture Makes a Difference—Embodiment
Effects on Depressive Memory Bias. J. Investig. Psych. Offender Profil., 21: 519–524.
Peper, E., Booiman, A., Lin, I. M., & Harvey, R. (2016). Increase strength and mood with posture.
Biofeedback. 44(2), 66–72.
Thrasher, M., Van der Zwaag, M. D., Bianchi-Berthouze, N., & Westerink, J. H. (2011, October). Mood r
ecognition based on upper body posture and movement features. In International Conference on
Affective Computing and Intelligent Interaction (pp. 377-386). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
Wilson, V.E. and Peper, E. (2004). The Effects of upright and slumped postures on the generation of
positive and negative thoughts. Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 29(3), 189-195.
Vøllestad, J., Nielsen, M. B., & Nielsen, G. H. (2012). Mindfulness‐and acceptance‐based interventions for
anxiety disorders: A systematic review and meta‐analysis. British Journal of Clinical
Psychology, 51(3), 239-260.
36-Item Short Form Survey Instrument (SF-36) | RAND. Retrieved from

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