Are you hunched over sitting in an office all day? Do you find yourself leaning to one side while standing? Both of these and many more daily activities can be the source of poor posture. This can lead to spine misalignment. The spine has a natural curve to it which allows for optimal functioning of the human body. Aside from the visible symptoms of poor posture, prolonged periods in unnatural positions can cause numerous internal problems to arise. This can include but not limited to muscle soreness and pain, increased stress and indigestion.
Muscle Soreness and Pain
People will find themselves being sore constantly. When you are hunched over, your muscles are working harder to keep the body upright, causing increased strain to affected areas. Poor posture puts additional strain on the spine which ultimately leads to lower back pain.
Increased Stress and Poor Mood
Poor posture is known to be associated with increased stress levels and gloomy moods. People who are slouched over have higher levels of depression and lower energy levels when compared to those who sit upright.
You may think digestion is unaffected by poor posture but in fact it delays and prevents digestion from occurring. When sitting in a hunched position, the digestive system is compressed and does not allow for optimal functioning. The intestinal tract will have difficulty absorbing nutrients as well as moving waste causing constipation to occur.
But not to worry! These exercises will help treat poor posture.
Exercise 1 – Cross Scapular Retraction
- Step on one end of a rubber tubing or a band
- Using your right hand grab the other end of the tubing
- Standing upright and maintaining a straight arm raise the right arm diagonally from the bottom left side to the upper right side
- Do both sides and repeat for 10 repetitions
Exercise 2 – Wall Angels
- Stand shoulder width apart on a flat wall
- Externally rotate arms at the shoulder joint until the upper arm, forearm and back of the hand are flat against the wall
- Raise hands straight above head, maintaining contact with the wall at all times
- Repeat for 12 repetitions
- Make sure back is flat against the wall throughout the duration of the movement
Exercise 3 – Chin Tucks
- In a standing or seated position, maintain a straight back
- Roll shoulders back and look directly in front of you
- With two to three fingers, push chin and head back
- Hold for 5-10 seconds and repeat for 10 repetitions
Make sure to take your time when doing these exercises!
Kevin Kwok – Client Care Manager
Kevin enrolled in numerous sports program as a child, which exposed him to an active lifestyle early in life. He played ultimate frisbee competitively in at the junior level while in high school. Kevin now focuses his training exclusively on dragon boating. He has been paddling for the past 2 years and hopes to make the Canadian National Team in 2019. He hopes he can motivate others to accomplish their short and long term fitness goals.
This post has been developed by studio contributors which include Co-Op students, kinesiologists, therapists and our expert colleagues