The Basic Makeover for your Posture
Good posture is vital. It affects your image and sends signals to others. A
woman with a shuffling slouch does not look confident or like she has much to
offer, she seems to be retreating into herself, and she may be left there,
alone. Many therapists confirm that the stronger and happier we are, the
better our posture.
Posture is the window to the spine. If posture is out of balance, then the
spine is out of balance, putting unhealthy pressure upon your nervous system.
Activities as subtle as sleeping, standing or
walking abnormally; to more
obvious traumas like emotional
stress, work or auto injuries, computer work,
recreational injuries and even the birth process itself can result in spinal
imbalance. Your spine is the most important factor affecting your posture. In
order to have the best possible posture (and health), your spine has to be in
the best possible condition. When your spine is out of alignment, this can lead
to early degeneration and decay of your spine as well as pinched nerves.
Posture also affects your health. Rounded shoulders prevent the lungs from
functioning correctly and giving you the puff you need under stress. Slouching
couch-potato-like for hours every evening can eventually cause the 'scrunching'
of your inner organs and the inhibition of proper digestion.
weight evenly to the front, back, and
sides of the feet while standing. While sitting in an office chair, take
advantage of the chairís features. Sit up straight and align the ears,
shoulders, and hips in one vertical line.
A Strong back
Good posture is about strength and
balance. If you are a flabby, wilting
wreck, you will have to build up before you can stand up. An erect back relies
not only on a straight spine but also on strong
tummy muscles. That's why doing
pelvic tilts trims the waistline as well as helping to prevent
problems. You can practice scooping your lower tummy muscles and rocking your
pelvis back and forth when sitting or standing.
Lie on the floor every day with legs bent into your chest. Roll your legs
slowly from side to side, keeping the upper body and the arms flat on the floor.
Do this ten times (five times to each side). This is a key exercise to keep the
back flexible as well as strengthen the pelvic and tummy muscles.
The 'cat position' from
yoga strengthens the spine and releases tension built
up over the day or a night's sleep. Kneeling on all fours, arch your back,
letting your head drop down. Hold for twenty seconds. Then do the reverse and
curve the back, with your bum and head raised. Ease into this stretch, and work
through five of each.
Squat whenever possible to pick things up. If this is a strain you need to
practice doing squats to make it easier. You'll not only save your back but also
tone your bum as a result.
Take a weight off your shoulders by working out the tension in your neck. If
you drive any distance, sit at a desk or in front of a computer for hours on end
every day, you must do corrective exercises to strengthen your neck muscles and
relieve tensions and potential knots.
Roll your head, gently and easily, to the side, holding your ear down towards
your shoulder for ten counts. Do this five times on each side twice a day. Then
drop your head to your chin and hold for five seconds. Do not drop your head
backwards as you don't have enough muscle support to hold the head too far in
Remember, any single position, even a good one, will be tiring if held for
long. In order to maintain a relaxed yet supported posture, change positions
frequently. Being aware of posture at work, at home, and at play
is a vital step towards instilling good posture. This includes making conscious
connections between episodes of back pain and specific situations where poor
posture may be the root cause of the pain.