Poor posture can negatively impact your overall health due to the uneven pressure put on muscles, joints, and organs. Here are some easy and convenient moves to help realign your spine and strengthen your core.
The failure to address posture problems can lead to pain, loss of function, and difficulty in breathing or digestion. Poor form can lead to imbalanced distribution of weight and performance loss. A neutral alignment of the shoulders, spine, and pelvis keeps everything where it should be. While chiropractors can provide temporary relief, the best way to really achieve spinal health is through training and adjustment. Here are some free, easy moves to improve your posture whenever you’ve got the time and space.
Get Straight & Centered with 5 Easy Moves
1. Strengthen Your Core with Forearm Planks
Lift your body off the floor face-down, with your elbows under your shoulders and your feet hip-width apart. Keep your shoulders low and your shoulder blades apart while slightly lifting your upper back. Imagine a straight line running through your body. Don’t arch your back or raise your buttocks. Gaze forward and activate your core by drawing your belly in towards the spine. Try to hold for at least 20-30 seconds.
2. Reset Your Chest & Shoulders with Wall Slides
Sitting down hunched over all day can give you rounded shoulders and a compressed chest. Find a wall, press your backside on it, and stand hip-width apart. Keep your tailbone, shoulder blades, and head touching the wall throughout the entire stretch. Bend your elbows 45 degrees with your hands at shoulder level, palms forward. In a 5-second motion, slowly lift your hands as high as you can. In another 5 seconds, bring your hands back down. Activate your core too for more results, and you can lower yourself into a sitting position for more of a challenge. Repeat at least 5 times.
3. Stabilize Your Hips & Lower Back via Glute Bridges
Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet hip-width apart, and arms at your side. Activate your core and slowly lift your hips off the floor, high enough to form a straight line from shoulders to knees. Try to keep your knees in a 90-degree angle and your glutes squeezed for at least 10 seconds in the bridge. Glute bridges help your spine and hips into their correct positions—decreasing pain found in the back, pelvic area, thighs, and knees.
4. Let a Wall Help You into the Warior III Yoga Pose
The Warrior III is a yoga pose that will improve your balance, strengthen your core, and tone your legs. Stand on one leg with your knee unlocked and weight on the middle of the foot, then slowly raise your other leg behind you. Drop your torso with your arms stretched in front and hands against a wall for support, until your body forms a straight line from fingers to feet. Keep your back straight and your core activated. Remember to breathe and try to hold this pose for 20 seconds, then switch legs. You can point your toes either back or down, and eventually let go of the wall.
5. Reset Your Posture Wherever, Whenever
To quickly fix your posture throughout the day, stand with your feet hip-width apart. Raise your arms to the side, with your weight on the balls of your feet and your core activated. Relax and hold the position until your arms get tired, and remember to retain that natural curve of your spine when you’re done. You can make small circles with your arms too—forward with your palms down and backwards with your palms up. Afterwards, go ahead and reset your hips; rest your weight evenly on the feet, put your hands on your hips, bring your elbows back with squeezed shoulder blades, then squeeze your glutes and hold.