How many times did your mother harp on you about good posture when you were growing up?
“Stand up straight!”
We all used to hear that as children, right? It’s even more important now, later in life.
Parents might tell their kids to correct their posture more to instill pride and project confidence. But good posture is about a lot more at this stage of life.
Posture and Aging
As we age, our bodies are “de-volving” into a more rounded, slumped posture. Not only does that add years to our appearance, but it also contributes to joint and muscle misalignment, which creates bad movement patterns. Continue with those, and pain and injury aren’t far behind. This is even more of an issue in those who go on to develop osteoporosis, especially in the thoracic spine.
For many, the slouching starts due to an occupational hazard: sitting behind a desk for decades.
The body will conform to those positions that it is most frequently in. As you sit in a chair, the body assumes a forward head posture with hunched shoulders. Hip flexors also are contracted and shortened. Even our breathing can become restricted. And it can also affect our balance.
Try this: Take a long deep breath. See and feel how your chest expands and your shoulders roll back, creating the desired tall, upright posture.
The rounded haunch is common but not inevitable. You can prevent or correct it. So focus on breathing, stretching and strengthening your core to maintain a solid base. And be sure your regimen includes at least a couple of exercises where you’re pulling those shoulders back, like seated rows. Yoga and Pilates are also excellent for strengthening posture.
All of those will get you or keep you standing tall. Mom would be proud.
If you’d like more help learning effective exercises and stretches that can help you improve your posture, I’m here to help! Contact me today to get started 🙂