Posture is certainly a hot topic of discussion! It really seems that everyone has an opinion on how to stand taller or sit more effectively and how to make it better. Posture is very unique to your body and although there are some common advice, it has to feel right and comfortable for you. What we know is that posture is the result of the cooperation of different body parts and systems, from the contraction of your muscles to the visual cues that help you balance, from the elasticity of your fascia to your breathing capacity. It is the excellent team-work of muscles, tendons, and receptors that is paramount to achieve good posture.
Since we spend most of our time sitting down, lets have a look and 4 simple tips to improve our sitting posture:
- Take a deep breath in and enjoy the changes in your body. Bring your focus on how your diaphragm elevates, your chest expands, your spine lengthens and you grow just a little taller from the very crown of your head. Put a post-it note on your screen and remind yourself of breathing in deeply every hour!
- As you inhale roll your shoulders all the way up and as you exhale let go of any unnecessary tension you might be carrying in your upper back and neck, specifically in the upper fibres of your trapezius muscle. Gently look down, side to side and then as you exhale return to centre. Feel how you can affect different fibres of the neck musculature and stay for a longer breath where you feel you need it the most.
- Place both palms of your hands on your chair cushion and apply a gentle downward pressure almost to lift you off your sit. As you you do so, be aware of the movement of your shoulder blades, specifically how the lower corners of your blades travel down and towards your spine, feel the delicate skin folding in between your blades as the activation of your serratus muscle occurs to stabilise your upper back.
- Spinal rotations are nurturing for your spine, they allow the effective and healthy lubrication of the discs between your vertebrae. As you sit down, take a deep breath in to lengthen and sit a little taller. As you exhale, bring the left hand on the outside of your right thigh and your right hand can gently hold your handle or back of the chair. Focus on how tall you sit rather than the twist, hold for one deep breath and then move to the opposite side.
These are 4 simple tips that your spine will be grateful for and in the long term you will know what works for your posture best!