Monday, September 13, 2010

The Importance of Posture

The anatomical structure, alignment and movement of the human figure is of incredible design, I hope you use it to its full potential and protect it as it needs to last you your whole life! With perfect postural alignment there is minimal stress to ligaments and tendons. Ideal upright posturing includes the line of gravity falling through the axis of joints such that forces are equally distributed and upright position requires little effort/strain on muscle to maintain. Unfortunately in the general population we rarely see ideal posture, with contributing factors relating to attitude, laziness, poorly conditioned/weak, being "well nourished" or other structural  reasons. Whatever the reasons are we should all strive to achieve our most ideal posture to  prevent/minimize injury as many "unexplained" aches and pains can be related to postures.
Take  a look around you, at the office, in the stores and around the neighborhood- how many people actually sit/stand with their head on top of their bodies? Most often our heads and shoulders reach our destination first. This forward head/shoulders position causes strain and abnormal structural stresses throughout the neck, upper back and shoulders which in time can lead to pain and injury.
Life generally occurs in front of us, compounding our ever forward positioning, with posture continuing to deteriorate with the day and with passing years. You must make good posture habit just as bad posture became habit...pull up your chair, sit your butt in the back of the seat where it belongs, shoulders back and stay that way! Change your attitude, change your habits, change your work station and change your program in the gym to work towards improving your posture!
Your postural solution:

  • awareness and changing habits is most important as even with improvements in flexibility and strength if your don't change your habits your posture will not change....the stretching and strengthening will provide you with the the tools to improve your posture but you must commit your mind to improve your postural habits.

  • stretch the chest wall/anterior structures with a corner or doorway pectoral stretch

  • strengthen the scapular retractors and stabilizers to help you maintain an upright posture

  • core strengthening is also important in  protecting the lower back (can dedicate a whole other article to that!)
In addition to the physical benefits of improved posture, consider how your posture reflects to the world your attitude, consider how much more confident people appear with a straighter posture. Also consider how much nicer your figure looks with your head up and shoulders back revealing even more of your hard work at the gym. Never seen anyone look worse while standing taller!

No comments:

Post a Comment