When you stand, is your spine straight? How about your head? Does your head enter a room before the rest of your body? As you age, years of poor posture can catch up with you. The result can be a hunched back, slow gait, and excruciating pain with every step. If you don’t want to end up dealing with these issues in your fifty’s or sixty’s, it’s imperative that you address your posture today.
Can you remember your mother telling you to stand up straight? She was right. When you keep your body properly aligned, you can reduce future health problems. But first, what exactly is “good posture”? Good posture is the ability to maintain your balance and keep your body’s alignment as you move.
In order to improve your posture, you must retrain your muscles to be properly balanced and aligned. A change may take a few weeks, but with steady effort, improvement can be achieved. Here are some tips for developing and maintaining proper posture.
Evaluate Your Posture
Prior to beginning to retrain your muscles, you must evaluate your posture. One of the best ways to achieve this is to have someone take pictures of you from the front, side, and behind. When reviewing the images, look for signs of imbalance such as one arm being lower, your backside sticking out, or a hunched back. If you notice any concerns in these pictures, you should attempt to realign your body.
The first way in which you can work on your posture is through chiropractic care. By seeing a chiropractor, you can address any structural areas that are out of alignment. A chiropractor can help realign your spine and relieve pain from poor posture. While you are working to improve your posture, you may need to see a chiropractor several times.
Another way to retrain your muscles and improve your posture is through balance. To improve balance, you should stand near a wall and raise one leg at the knee so that your thigh is parallel to the floor. The goal is to hold this position for twenty seconds and repeat the process with the other leg. If you can’t hold the position, then shorten the length of time or use a doorway to help steady you.
The next way to retrain your muscles is with alignment. To start this exercise, you need to stand against the wall. Next, step forward one foot’s-length away from the wall. The next step is to lean against the wall with your backside, back, and head. The key to this step is to not look up when your head is against the wall. However, if you can’t keep your chin down when holding this position, lean your head back until right before your head begins to tilt up. Whichever point you can keep your head steady at is where you should hold the position for twenty seconds. By holding this position, you can improve your body alignment.