How to have perfect posture in 4 quick steps
Improving one’s posture is one of the most common goals that we hear from and help our patients with. And I think for good reason!
Good posture is important for how you think about yourself and how others think and assess you. While now somewhat debated, there is some research that suggests also influences your mood and behaviours!
From a biomechanical perspective, good posture is essential. There is ample research that shows that spine mechanics and shoulder mechanics are altered with rounding of the spine and a forward shift in the neck. There is additional research that shows that lung volume and breathing will be altered by postured. Needless to say, posture is important even if you are not a chiropractor.
Why You Could Be Struggling With Your Posture
If you are struggling with your posture than there are two important questions to answer:
- If my posture bad because of problem with my spine causing a structural distortion. More or this later. OR
- Do I just not know the skill of good posture and know how to stack up my spine
Finding the perfect posture is a skill just like squatting or taking a golf shot. While a healthy spine is more likely to enable good posture and naturally stack up with the ears, shoulders and hips well aligned, someone might just lose the habit and muscle memory of finding that perfect posture and needs to practice it.
How To Find Perfect Posture
If you want to find perfect posture do this
1. squeeze/tighten the glutes like you are holding a piece of paper between the buttocks
This will create a neutral pelvic tilt and stack up the pelvis
2. BRACE the core. Tighten the muscles in the front (abdominals), side (obliques) and back (paraspinals). This would feel like Hyde response to having your tummy tickled or bracing against a punch to the belly button
This will stack up and alight the lumbar spine and the rib cage/thoracic spine
3. Make a double chin. With the eyes leave – picture laser beams coming out of the eyes that are staying level to the floor, retract the neck backwards gently to give yourself a small double chin
This will stack up your cervical spine over the pelvic, low back and middle back.
4. Put 51% of your weight on your heels
This will help to centre the ears over the ankles, especially in those with a high degree of leg and ankle flexibility
5. Relax your muscle and body and your spine should come to rest in an ideal posture.
Once your do steps 1-4 over the course of one to two seconds this should leave your spine in a good natural posture.
Video starts at 3:30 with "Good Posture" section but all the skills are essential!
What To Do If Your Posture Is Still Bad
If you find that you can’t hood this position because it is uncomfortable despite repeated practice – get your spine checked
If you find that your can’t adopt this position at all because it hurts, get your spine checked.
If find this position is impossible because your can’t turn on the right muscles get your spine checked.
If you don’t look straight even when you do this – get your spine checked.
One of the consequences of an unhealthy spine can be poor posture or an inability to find it. If you are struggling to see a change then get your spine checked.