5 Essential Steps to Curb the Curve
Curb the curve, straighten the slouch, perfect the posture. However you want to refer to it, we are all becoming increasingly slouchy creatures. Our modern lifestyle requires a huge number of people to sit (and usually slouch) at computers all day, in their cars or huddled over their phone. People with sedentary lifestyles often perpetuate a posture of increased flexion in the upper spine and a forward head. With ‘text neck’ becoming a real thing, it’s no wonder there’s such a prevalence of neck and upper back tension!
There are so many benefits to good posture. Benefits include increasing room for internal organs, increasing alertness and energy during the day, preventing back injury and protecting your spinal column. How could you not want good posture?
Here are some key tips to help you curb the curve and straighten the slouch:
- Be Mindful. Simply recognizing your posture while sitting at your desk, while reading, or while playing on your phone is the first and most important step. Once you recognize it you can adjust it!
- Find Neutral. Think about all of the times you work in neutral pelvis on the mat or reformer in class. You want to recreate that same alignment while sitting and working throughout the day. Ideal posture: head over shoulders and shoulders over hips with knees below hips to promote minimal hip flexion.
- Move Every Hour. An hour can fly by, especially if you’re deeply involved in your work. However, it’s so important that you get up and move around every hour even if it’s just to fill your water bottle, go to the restroom or pick up copies from the printer. You’ll reset your mindfulness, get the blood flowing, and lengthen your hip flexors.
- Don’t Sit. Stand. Whenever possible, don’t sit! Ask for a standing desk at work or come up with a makeshift one on your own. Do you ride the bus to and from work and clamber on to get one of the last remaining seats. It’s time to rethink that habit! You are probably sitting all day so take this time to stand and work on your stabilizing muscles.
- Take a Class. Building the necessary muscles to maintain good posture throughout the day is so important. Just doing a refresher Pilates class every once in a while will remind you how to engage those all-important postural muscles.
The benefits of good posture are endless. In a nutshell, you’ll feel better, have more confidence, increase your strength and mobility, and prevent unnecessary injury. Pick your chin up and stand up straight!