Your posture says a lot about you. If you want to get a lasting impression from people around you, start it with good posture. You look ten times better if you walk and stand as you should, and more than this, it is a real help to look slender. Proper posture is the finest exercise of all that plumps-up your health and confidence. If you think you have a problem in your posture, you may need a thorough overhaul.
Proper posture involves training the body to stand, walk, sit and lie, in positions where the least strain is placed on supporting muscles and ligaments. It keeps bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used properly, that contributes to good appearance and health.
The correct posture while standing:
Take a look at yourself in front of a mirror, this is what you should see:
1.Head up with chin parallel to the floor
2.Shoulders relaxed to make your neck look long
3.Breasts high and tummy tucked in
4.Straight knees with front foot pointed straight forward
Standing correctly allows normal motion in the joints, while standing badly throws the body completely out of balance. Whatever your proportions are, however perfect they may be, makes you look a bad shape.
A test for a straight back:
Stand in your usual way against a wall with heels, back of knees, shoulders and head against the wall. Straighten your spine against the wall and feel if the back of your head, shoulders and knees touches the wall. If it does, you are in proper posture.
The correct posture while sitting:
Is your head jabbing forward, shoulders drooping and chest that looks like collapsing? Are you supporting yourself with your own muscles or is the chair doing it all? Sitting beautifully is to:
1.Sit well back on the chair
2.Spine straight and back supported by a slightly reclined chair-back
3.Feet should rest flat on the floor, if your feet cannot reach the floor, use a footrest
4.Knees should be level with or slightly higher than the hips
You will find yourself automatically pulling your tummy in as it distributes your weight evenly. When you get up from the chair, work with your calf and thigh muscles, instead of your hips.
What is your posture in sleeping?
The natural allignment of the spine must be supported while sleeping so that back muscles are fully-
relaxed. Choosing a firm-cushioned mattress that provides a better back support is relatively important because it helps distribute the weight of the body while putting the spine curves in its correct placement. A good pillow can promote correct body positioning in bed while lying.
The correct way to lift
1.See to it that that object you are about to lift is close to your body
2.The feet should be flat on the floor at shoulder width for a full base support
3.Bend your knees and keep your back straight all throughout
4.Tighten your stomach muscles and lift with your legs, not with your back
Signs of Poor Posture
1.A slouching and hunching shoulders
2.Lower back that is arching too much
3.Head and neck that is jabbing forward and down
4.Slumping forward while sitting
Poor posture creates muscle tension around the shoulder and neck that also stresses the spine. Kisner and Colby, in Therapeutic Exercise, 3rd edition, state that this adaptive shortening of soft tissues and muscle weakness, caused by prolonged poor postural habits is considered to be a postural dysfunction.
During this stressful time, posture suffers and breathing patterns may become shallow and tensed. For this reason, it is very helpful to adapt correct and proper posture.
Tips to help overcome unhealthy posture
1.Be aware of your own posture. Take a look at yourself in front of a long mirror and face the truth on the way you stand and sit.
2.Exercise. There are less expensive exercises you can do. Brisk walking, jogging, swimming and getting active with sports help improve over-all health. Proper posture by nature is constant in a well-conditioned body
3.Do some stretching for the back and hips to enhance your abs and hamstrings
4.Practice really deep breathing in a comfortable standing or sitting position. This also relieves physical discomfort cause by the hunched over posture
5.Practice makes perfect. Step-by-step, you will eventually learn the correct posture for standing, sitting and lying down.
Correct posture is one good asset that you can perfect yourself with a little practice. Self-consciousness and effort are what you need to cultivate good posture habits and achieve a healthy lifestyle and feel younger. Remember that proper posture conveys self-esteem.