Ever since I began going to physical therapy, my posture has been whipped into shape.
My dad was constantly (and lovingly) on our case when we were kids to sit up straight. Did I listen? Not as well as I should have been.
I personally think that better posture is going to be my long-term solution to this degenerated neck situation. But, in the process, I’ve learned how many other reasons there are to have good posture.
Want to have more confidence, more motivation, lower stress and the ability to basically rule the world? Time to sit up straight. I smile as I type that, but I’m serious.
Minimize lower back pain. Good posture is critical to reducing back and neck pain (I’m learning it firsthand). Slouching adds strain to muscles and put stress on the spine.
Look and feel better from head to toe. Being upright does wonders for your appearance. You’ll taller, slimmer and more successful when you sit and stand (and think) tall.
Strengthen your core. I have a stand up desk and spend an average of 2-3 hours a day standing up. When I’m not engaging my core, my lower back starts aching. But the minute I straighten up, and engage my core, the pain eases. It’s quite fascinating.
Try this exercise to prompt you to a straighter posture:
Position your hip and knee joints at 90 degree angles.
Put your feet flat on the floor.
Center your sitting bones (pelvis).
Arms at a 90 degree angle, thumbs turned away from you. (This one seems silly, but it really opens up your chest.)
Shoulders relax down away from your ears and are in a vertical line with your hips.
Engage your core. This greatly alleviates strain on your back muscles while you’re trying to change such an ingrained habit.
Lift your chest and gently bring your head slightly back.
Look up from your electronic device.
Breathe and smile.
I have to admit it, my Dad was right. Learning the art of sitting up straight can make some important changes in our lives. Remember, like everything in life, it is a practice; it’s a habit and takes time to develop correct posture. Trust this girl who is actually praying for help in the area.. it takes practice.
Practice good posture at any moment of the day, sitting or standing. What I’m learning is that it is about having enough awareness to arrange your bones properly so your muscles work efficiently and strongly to support you.