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Improve Your Posture

Posted Dec 06 2008 11:51am

Posture may be one of the most overlooked aspects of overall healthy living. If not fixed, your posture will only continue to get worse. Bad posture will stretch muscles and tendons constantly that are not designed for that purpose. By slouching down and hanging your head, you will end up warping those muscles and can cause aches and pain though out your whole body. By dropping your head this will continue down you whole body and cause rounding of your back, shifting of your hips, and putting excessive pressure on your lower joints. To think this can all be avoided by keeping your head high, is a phenomenon why so many people ignore it.

How To Fix Bad Posture

  • Stand up tall - Not only will a tall powerful stance improve overall posture it will create a more confident look for your self, and demand respect in everyday life.
  • Keep your Shoulders back- By remembering to keep your shoulders back will keep you from slouching forward.
  • Sit upright- If you happen to work a desk job avoid rounding you back at you desk all day but rather sit with your torso in proper alignment. Get up and walk around as much as possible to avoid one position for extended periods of time.
  • Build a strong core- A rock hard-core and strong abs will not allow you to sit or stand with bad posture as it will force you to straighten up your body and over time create a great posture.

Stretches to Improve Posture

In most cases of bad posture the chest is concave drawing the shoulders forward, this will constantly round your back and create a bad posture. Here are a couple quick stretches that will help to fix this.

  • While standing straight up with good posture bring your shoulder blades up and together. When you feel the stretch in your shoulders and back hold the stretch for 10 seconds. Do 3 to 5 sets daily.
  • With a light barbell, take a grip a little wider then shoulder width. With the bar in front of your body and your arms fully extended bring the bar behind your head and down your back. Keep your elbows as straight as possible and you will feel this shift your shoulders,chest and back. Do 10 reps for 3 to 5 sets daily.
  • Laying flat on your stomach, lift your right arm and left leg as high as you can in the air, hold to 5 seconds. Switch between opposite legs and arms for 20 reps, (10 each side) for 3 to 5 sets daily. This will stretch out your lower back and hamstrings and help with back pain.
  • Laying flat on your back bring one leg up and pull your quad as close to your chest as possible while keeping your knee straight. Have someone to push on your leg you will get a better stretch. Keep you back and shoulders flush with the ground to make sure the stretch is in your hips. Switch between legs for 20 reps ( 10 a leg ) for 3 to 5 sets daily. This will shift your hips forward in helping fix your posture.

Other exercises to fix posture if done with good technique are power lifting work outs such as the deadlift, squats, overhead press, and barbell rows. These exercises will build a strong core, lower back, and a powerful base, forcing you to stand and sit with better posture. When these exercises are done with perfect form they will teach how your posture should be. If you are doing these exercises and have bad form be aware that this can make posture worse.

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Post from: Men's Garage

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