Want to look thinner in an instant? Try standing or sitting up straight. Many of you forget your posture and slouch without thinking about it. When you are slumped over, folds of excess flab bunch together. If you do as your mother said and stand up straight you will look younger and thinner and maybe a little taller. A good posture lets other people see you as energetic and relaxed. Good posture is good for you.
Most of the daily habit you follow promotes side to side imbalances or one shoulder forced higher than the other. You carry laptops and huge purses on the same shoulder with cell phones squeezed in between your ear and your shoulder. You sit in your cars with cell phones crunched in your ears. These activities create side to side imbalances.
Sitting behind a computer screen or behind the wheel of your car forces your spine to be stuck in a forward hunching position. Change how you sit in front of your computer. This will do wonders for your posture and back. Sit with your back erect and do not lean back or slouch forward. Uncross your knees and bend them at a 90 degree angle. Line your head over your shoulders and keep your eyes level with the screen.
If you can, sit on a physio ball (large.) Learn to posture and balance. These types of tricks prevent trunk muscles from being lazy.
Reduce your joint and back pain at the gym. Have you ever run on the treadmill or used the Stairmaster in a hunched over position while you read a book? This increases curves in the spine and gives your lower back undue pressure. Try slowing down the Stairmaster, comfortably rest your fingertips on the handrails and look straight ahead. If you must read, make sure it is at eye level.
When you hunch over while standing or sitting with one leg crossed over the other you are creating compression. Certain ligaments are stretched too much and other ligaments are compressed. The body is out of balance. Improve posture and relieve compression. When you are standing straight and tall internal organs function properly, your respiration deepens and blood flows properly.
No more joint pain, or at least joint pain is lessened, by a balanced body. Clinicians state those with good posture have fewer muscle imbalances and less joint pain. If you have certain health conditions, posture is very important. Stroke victims are often left with imbalance in their muscles and poor postures. If they stand up straight their lungs open up and they breathe much better. This helps lessen fatigue.
Having good posture makes it easier for people with asthma to get full breaths. Use your diaphragm when you breathe and this will help decrease the severity of asthma attacks.
If you have been diagnosed with scoliosis try standing up straight. Osteoporosis suffers can also benefit from good posture.
Try engaging yourself in popular fitness options that focuses on body awareness with improved posture. Learn to engage your core muscles and take up Pilates, yoga, tai chi and Feldendrais. Having a strong muscle core improves postures and decreases the risk of injury from an unbalanced body. Start a progressive program with basic movements. Pay closer attention to your body and its alignment. Choose to be conscious of your posture and stand up tall and straight. It’s time to stop ignoring how you stand and sit.
Ideas for Better Posture
- Free up the muscles in the back of your neck. Physically allow your head to rotate forward and the crown of your head reaches up toward the ceiling. Sit your butt down into the chair and move the rest of you up. You are now sitting in a better position.
- If you are sitting in a slumped position, release your neck tension. Rotate your head slightly forward and let the crown of your head move up. Your head should lead your spin up. Sit bones should release into the chair.
- Open your jaw like you are going to yawn and make a whispered “ah” sound. Breathe out. Think of something happy. With your lips together and your teeth apart breathe in through your nose. Make no sound. Expand your torso. Feels so great!
- Have tension in your neck and jaw? Let it go. Free your neck by slowly lowering your nose. The crown of your head moves up. Release the tension in your neck, shoulders, legs and jaw. Re-release neck tension and whisper “ah.”
- If you can take five minutes and lie on the floor on your back. Rest your head on paperback books so it is a few inches off the floor. Bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor. Breathe deeply. Start with the top of your chest and work down to your abdomen. Release neck tension. Meditate and think about something happy. Like your co-workers asking what you are doing.