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Perfecting Your Posture

By Donna Stark

Your mom and teachers were right when they kept telling you to sit up straight, and believe it or not, what they knew then is still very relevant today. Posture, like a healthy diet, daily exercise, and quality sleep, is fundamental to optimal health. At its most basic, posture refers to the body's alignment and the position that you hold your body, but it's not as simple as that. It also plays a part with the force and stress that is exerted on your body's joints, ligaments, and muscles. You see, good posture can help to ensure that no one body part is overstressed, while poor posture can wreak havoc on it all. 

Ways to Perfect Your Posture

The way you carry and hold your body is pivotal to your overall health and wellness. In fact, poor posture can lead to significant health complications and loss of bone strength, so whether you are standing, sitting, or lying down, you need to be intentional with it. Here are some tips on how to improve your posture.

  • Practice yoga - Yoga helps to bring increased awareness to your body and counters slouching by strengthening your core muscles and loosening your hip flexors.
  • Swim - Swimming is a total-body workout that can improve the way you hold your body because it strengthens and stretches your core muscles. It's a perfect way to either correct your bad posture or maintain the good posture you already have.
  • Exercise - Poor posture can cause tightness in the chest which can pull your shoulders forward, so it's important to loosen your muscles by keeping them moving. One of the best exercises to do that is to hold both arms out horizontally and slowly swing them in a circular motion.
  • Sit correctly - Sitting improperly can cause your body to become unbalanced and your posture to become strained. So sit upright, place both feet on the floor, pull your shoulder blades back, and keep your head and neck in a neutral position.
  • Be intentional - It's easy to forget about your posture when you have been sitting or standing for a long time, so try to be very intentional with your body position. Take note of when you are slouching and fix it right away, or have a coworker or loved one watch it for you if you have trouble noticing it yourself.
  • Use your phone properly - When using a phone, keep it in your hand, and don't tilt your head to your shoulder as a way of holding it. You may also find it easier to keep your head in a neutral position by using a Bluetooth earpiece instead!

Thank Your Mom

It's a nice idea to give your mom some thanks for pushing you to correct your posture when you were a child, but it's an even nicer idea to really start focusing on your posture now! It's never too late to start!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Pooler, Ga.

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