The simple way to get perfect posture (no books required)
You rolled your eyes when mom said it, but, seriously, stand up straight! Sure it makes you look more presentable, but more importantly, it impacts your physical health. Poor posture can lead to painful joints, challenged breathing and trouble walking.
The easiest way to learn proper posture is to stand against a wall and pull (don’t squeeze) your shoulders directly back and then down. The wall should essentially force your tailbone to align (we usually have it stuck out, forcing our spine in to a “C.”) Be sure not to over-correct by sticking your hips out in front. Also tuck in your neck directly back (not up), like a turtle heading back in to his shell.
Signs of good posture:
- Shoulder blades are visible
- Shoulders are aligned with one another
- Ears are at the middle of your shoulder
- Feet and knees face forward
This is what you should strive for. Feel hard? Here are culprits that tend to play in to poor posture:
A weak core: Take those crunches seriously. They’ll help shift the work from your shoulders and spine to your center. Here are some other exercises to make stremgtjem that core.
Tight hip-flexors: Stretching your hip-flexors will help align your tailbone.
Stiff neck muscles: The back of your neck tends to do a lot of the heavy lifting as you look down to your phone or laptop all day. Counteract that by pulling your neck directly back like a turtle and forward 10 times to strengthen the muscles at the front of the neck.
When first practicing good posture, it can feel unnatural and awkward. Give it time. The longer you practice it, the more your body becomes trained to adopt that position naturally. As with any new habit, remembering to actually work on your posture all day can be a challenge in itself. Put a post it note with a capital P on it near your computer to remind yourself throughout the day to sit up straight or set a reminder on your phone to go off randomly that tells you to check your posture.
Photo credit: CollegeDegrees360