Posture Perfect

Prevention, posture, looking tall, slim and confident

Perhaps you’re the blushing bride or have a big night out complete with new hair and outfit. People often work hard to complete the outward look only to have it marred by terrible posture. Long gone are the days of learning to walk with a book on your head or sit straight as a rod with the ankles ever so delicately crossed to the side. The epidemic of poor posture may not be entirely the lack of etiquette classes but more the fault of our lifestyles. They require us to sit all the time and to do most tasks right in front of us such as driving, working on the computer and for kids, playing video games. ALL of this contributes to poor posture – one where the head juts forward, the shoulders are rounded and slumped and the back is curved. Now add in the fact that further lifestyle demands require this static posture for long periods of time. This is now an endurance workout, but of the worst kind. You are effectively training your stabilizing/postural muscles to support your spine and the rest of your body in contorted positions. Not only does this make a person look shorter, heavier and most importantly less confidant. It will also inevitably lead to chronic problems such as low back problems, neck and shoulder pain and possibly more severe issues with the spinal column itself.

Obviously we can’t quit our jobs or stop transporting our kids around but we can be proactive to prevent poor posture or work towards reversing the effects of years of poor posture.

If you sit at a desk for long periods ensure it’s set up ergonomically for you. You could also consider using an exercise ball to sit on instead of a chair – the instability of this will engage your abdominal muscles more often – making them stronger, as well as, MAKE you sit properly (or you’ll fall off the ball).

For long bouts in the car, again set it up ergonomically for you. Consider using a tennis ball placed just between your upper back and the seat of the car. This forces you to sit back to keep the ball from falling.

If you sit for long periods, set a timer to get up AT LEAST once every hour to walk around and stretch for a few minutes.

Look to the move of the week to re-align your spine properly. If you have rounded shoulders you will want to strengthen your upper back doing resistance exercises for the rear delts, rhomboids and mid trapezius. (Reverse flyes, narrow and wide rows). You will also want to stretch the tight muscles of the chest.

For lower back pain, it’s vital to strengthen the abdominal muscles and stretch the lower back and hamstrings.

Do regular body scans throughout the day. Are you catching yourself in poor posture? If so, immediately correct yourself. Re-teach those muscles to work in the correct manner. Good posture will instantly exude confidence and a taller, leaner you. Whether you’re dressed to the nines or just going out to pick up the kids from school, you will look spectacular with the right posture.

 

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Author: tammyjuco

Motivating and assisting you and your family to a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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