Hey everyone, In today's post I will be talking about the posture and how to fix your posture. A lot of people have a bad posture without even realising it.
Improving Your Posture
In order to improve your posture you need a balance of muscular strength and flexibility. The modern lifestyle often plays a huge part in bad posture due to sitting down for long periods of time for example using computers due to office jobs or driving. This often leads to weakness and lengthening of the muscles causing shortening and loss in flexibility in others. This results in changes to the posture which can result in decreased functioning of the muscles and increased risk of injury,pain and discomfort.
Some Factors That May Contribute To Changes In Posture
Age can play a part in a change of posture. This can be because as you age you can lose bone mass which can contribute and lead to conditions such as osteoporosis, degeneration of vertebral discs which can lead to arthritis. If the spine is affected by this can cause a decrease in mobility.
Carrying a bag on one shoulder can cause shortening of the muscles on one side of the body. Which I am guilty of for sure. Also wearing high heeled shoes will change the centre of gravity and balance and cause the shortening of the gastrocnemius muscle. Please be mindful of this and look after your body.
For anyone who may have asked the question "what is the gastrocnemius muscle" The picture above will show you.
Some sports can develop muscle groups more than others creating imbalances within the muscles creating postural changes.
Self Esteem/ Confidence
How you feel about yourself usually tend to show on the outside. Those that are confident and have a high self esteem usually have a better posture than those who do not feel good about themselves. Those who lack confidence and self esteem usually tend to have more of a hunched or closed posture which can affect the muscles and posture of the body.
The Correct Posture And Alignment
It is very important to ensure that your posture is correct and in the right alignment before exercise. As a personal trainer it would be my and other personal trainer's job to check the optimal posture of our clients and how we usually do this is viewing the client using a plumb line falling vertically from the top of the head to the feet. How we would usually do this is through looking through the following points:
Crown of the head
bodies of the cervical vertebrae
middle of the tip of the shoulder
dividing the rib cage in half equally back to front
bodies of the lumbar vertebrae
posterior to the hip joint
anterior to the axis (midpoint) of the knee joint
Here are a few photos to show you the ideal correct posture and how your body is meant to be aligned. Your head should be equally aligned between the shoulders without poking forward. Your chest should be open with shoulders not rolling forward. Your shoulder blades should be neutral and slid down towards your buttocks not lifted. The spine should be neutral maintaining its natural s curves. The pelvis should be neutral anterior or posterior tilt. Knees should be straight but unlocked. Feet neutral, under knees and hips without rolling inwards or outwards.
Different Kinds Of Bad Postures
Flat Back Posture
The flat back posture usually consists of:
Flattened lumbar curve
stiffness in lumbar spine
posterior tilt of the pelvis
hip flexors lengthened
rectus abdominis are tight
How to strengthen
To restore the flat back posture back to normal you need to strengthen the deep core stabilisers ( transversus abdominis) Mobilise the spine, especially extension you can also stretch the hamstrings and rectus abdominis.
hyperkyphosis is the excessive curvature of the thoracic spine. Usually labelled the "hunchback" A lot of people have this posture without realising it. Myself being one of them. It is important that of you are exercising you are working on restoring your posture back to its optimal state.
Hyperkyphotic Posture Usually Consists Of:
Head poking forward
short and overactive upper trapezius
short and tight pectorals
lengthened and inactive lower trapezius, middle trapezius and rhomboids
posterior deltoid lengthened
How To Strengthen
hyperlordosis is the excessive curvature of the lumbar spine. This is a condition that occurs when the lumbar region (lower back) experiences stress or extra weight and is arched to point of muscle pain or spasms.
Hyperlordotic Posture Consists Of:
Anterior tilt of pelvis
lengthened rectus abdominis
gluteus maximus usually weak and inactive
hip flexor shortened
increased lumbar curvature
short erector spinae
How To Strengthen
Strengthen abdominal muscles rectus abdominis and external obliques
strengthen deep core stabilisers (Transversus abdominis)
lengthen hip flexor and spine extensors ( erector spinae)
mobilise spine, especially flexion
I hope this post has been very insightful and helps you figure what posture you have and how to correct it. Working out with a bad posture can cause further damage to the body which is why you should make it a priority to fix your posture and work on other areas of the body afterwards. If you have any questions do not hesitate to ask me. Always here to help and spread knowledge where I can.
TM xxx Instagram - @shortasstam