Sunday, October 23, 2011

How to have better Posture

Posture in a classic sense is the body position when standing or seated. This definition can be broadened to: every stance and position we hold our bodies while working and relaxing.  

Optimal body posture requires a fully functional spine which is able to move freely in every functional direction. The body is built to be strongest and most protected in a neutral a neutral position, when your core muscles are structurally engaged and creating a brace about which we can move and work. When the body is positioned neutrally it is able to function with the least amount of abnormal stress on the spine, thus giving us an optimally functioning experience. In popular culture working out your "core" muscles has become very popular with new functional exercise programs. This new trend seems to have emerged to combat the increasing about one back pain and injuries that Americans today are experiencing. 

These core muscles are very important to a strong and stable body, however many people are forgetting a key element to protecting their spines. This key element is awareness of posture in our most common daily activities. Awareness of proper posture is not simple standing and sitting up straight. 

Proper posture is: 
  • Learning where to place our feet to provide a stable foundation for the rest of our body. 
  • Learning how to position our pelvis (hips) into a neutral position avoiding too much flexion or extension.
  • Learning to neutrally balance our lumbar spine (low-back) on top of the pelvis
  • Learning to properly place the shoulders on the thorax so that breathing is unhindered and actually facilitated. 
  • Finally learning how to balance our eyes on the horizon so that our necks are centered on the spine and not leaning forward. 
These are some basic topics of postural awareness that people tend not to remember and thus fall into a poor unnatural and unhealthy posture. Yes even people who have the strongest "core" muscles can still have poor posture if they are not practicing healthy natural body positioning. 

Future posts will go into more depth on human posture.

Here are some links to other Posture Blogs:
the posture blog

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