Posture Correction Exercises: Mindfullness of your stance is an important part of any pilates routine with posture exercises. It's difficult to say here, just which muscles you need to strengthen to improve your posture.
Some of us seem to have been born with a perfect posture, and the rest of us have to work at it. If you have good spinal alignment and healthy muscles, there’s a good chance you also have a good posture.
However, that’s not always the case unfortunately. A healthy spine consists of 4 natural curves – cervical (neck)is curved in, thoracic (upper back)curved out, lumbar (mid back)curved in again and the sacral (lower back)out again - all in good alignment. Unfortunately bad posture = unhealthy spine.
Bend knees slightly; contract tummy muscles & point tailbone down to floor; draw shoulder blades gently down back; head up & back sitting on top of spine. PERFECT!
If however any muscles attached to the spine are tight, your alignment and posture will be affected. Here are 3 examples:
1. Upper Body:
We do so much activity requiring arms forward of the body (computer, driving, gardening etc). These activities shorten pectoral (chest) muscles and lengthen back muscles causing problems in the thoracic spine and wreck upper body posture and good alignment.
2. Upper Back & Neck Pain: This then causes a lot of upper back and neck pain. In the worst case scenario, the shoulder blades may drift up your back and a "hump" may form.
Another result of this front-of-body activity is tight chest muscles, and as long as they are tight, it is difficult to strengthen the back. So, you need to know about posture exercises which will improve the situation.
We've devised basic instructions to test your posture. Just click HERE....
2 Minute Posture Correction Exercises Video
3. Inflexibility: If we spend a lot of time sitting, not only do we end up looking as unhappy as this chap does, but hamstring muscles at the back of your legs, shorten and quads (at the front of legs) lengthen which may cause misalignment of the pelvis and back pain.
So you need to check out our stretches pages, for excellent stretching exercises, advice and examples.
Additionally, another posture problem involves the head. It weighs around 5 kilograms (that’s heavy!) If there is weakness in the upper back, the trapezius muscle will be compromised, the head will drift forward out of alignment, and headaches and tension will develop.
Strong muscles hold your skeleton in place giving you good alignment and hence posture, but if there is a weakness in those muscles, your posture will suffer.
Pilates exercises and exercise stretches are the best way to achieve a good posture giving you the WOW factor,confidence and comfort.
I'ts an excellent idea to improve core strength, so check the link below to find our best abdominal exercises.
Check out our collection of DVDs - you're sure to find one that is just right for you. There are 4: Core Strength Exercises, Stability Ball Exercises, Resistance Band Exercises & Stretching Exercises.