Stand up straight! It’s a good reminder and something you’ve probably heard from a parent, doctor, or coach. Why? Slouching places undue stress on areas of your body that weren’t meant to handle it. Over time, your muscles tighten from compensating and your joints begin to ache from the pressure, which can lead to injury and chronic pain. Use these tips from EXOS to improve your posture.
Drink up. Dehydration causes fatigue, which is one of the main reasons posture begins to weaken. Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water to decrease fatigue, boost energy, and improve your posture.
Work with your natural curve. Sitting up straight doesn’t mean you want your spine perfectly perpendicular to the ground. Instead, focus on sitting with your head up, shoulders back, and your back naturally arched. This position helps distribute force throughout your body.
Try shoulder rolls. As you fatigue, your shoulders tend to roll forward and put pressure on your back. To increase circulation to your shoulders and spine, roll both of your shoulders forward, up, back, and around 10 times every hour if possible.
Practice decompression sitting. When sitting in a chair, scoot all the way back into the seat. Lift your shoulders and rib cage up, and then lean back into the chair’s backrest. Now relax your shoulders and rib cage. You should feel your spine decompress. Repeat as needed.
Take stretching breaks. If you’re sitting for long periods of time, walk around every 45 minutes to stretch, reset your posture, and refresh your mind.
Be mindful of your breath. Becoming more aware of your breathing can improve your posture and the muscular tone and tissue quality in the areas where you carry tension such as your shoulders, upper back, chest, and neck.
Make better posture a priority with the help of a Mercy Fitness Specialist. At least once a week, perform pillar strength exercises like Pilates Reformer to strengthen your core and help you stand up straighter. You’ll notice a difference!