Posture Improvement

Posture Improvement: Overview

Good posture improves your health and your overall appearance.  When you stop slouching you'll discover that not only will this aid in digestion, it will also help ease and prevent other problems that may occur that involve the neck, shoulders and back.  Straightening and strengthening the muscles in your back does wonders for your wellbeing.  Give it a try!

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Instructions

Tips for improving posture:

  • Exercise. Performing regular back and abdominal exercises (e.g. yoga, Pilates, etc.) will strengthen muscles and help maintain good posture without causing discomfort.
  • Firm mattress and sleeping position. Sleep on a mattress that is firm and will provide your back with good support.  Either sleep on your back and keep your legs straight or place a pillow under your knees, or if you sleep on your side, keep your legs slightly bent and make sure the top leg is straighter than the bottom leg.  Do not sleep on your stomach.
  • Constant conscious awareness. Always be aware of how you are sitting or standing.  That way you can correct your posture if your body slips into its familiar bad habits.

On This Page

Posture Improvement:

Posture Improvement can help with the following:

Digestion

Heartburn / GERD / Acid Reflux

Maintain an upright position during and at least 45 minutes after eating.

When you put excess pressure on your stomach, it takes longer for your stomach to digest food.  The longer it takes for your stomach to digest food, the higher your chances of developing indigestion and/or acid reflux.  Therefore, improving posture during and after meals may help or prevent symptoms of heartburn.

The postures that you adopt while you ingest food and directly after you eat are important, because they can either make food digestion an easy or difficult process for your body.  For instance, sitting in a hunched forward position while you eat, and lying down directly after a meal, places additional stress on the stomach and can promote indigestion or heartburn.

Furthermore, wearing anything tight around your waist (belts, tight pants, corset, etc.) while you're eating places pressure on your stomach.  Taut clothing prevents your stomach from expanding and moving freely, which is a natural process during eating and digestion.

Mental

Low Self-Esteem

While poor self-esteem can contribute to poor posture, the idea that improving posture can improve self-esteem is surprising to some people.  Citing his recent posture study of five women between the ages of 20 and 50, Aaron Parnell, a personal trainer, concludes that poor posture can lock negative emotions in the body.  "Good posture emanates positive feelings in personal strength and self awareness, which leads to more self confidence."

After the women went through a series of specific body restructuring treatments to improve their posture, all of them showed remarkable differences in their self-esteem.  Most of the women were expecting the body treatments, which use certain stretching and breathing techniques, to release tension and straighten-out their bodies.  None realized it would affect their self-esteem.  100% reported they were much more bold and willing to take risks at work.  80% said they had more energy and were jumping out of bed in the mornings.  60% said their bodies were looking and feeling more feminine.  All of them volunteered that they were more self-accepting now that they were in touch with their bodies; they felt more comfortable with who they were.

See a posture specialist, chiropractor, yoga teacher or deep tissue body worker to help undo years of poor posture habits.  While it is becoming clear that posture and self-esteem directly influence each other, more study needs to be done on the connection between posture improvement and self-esteem enhancement.

Pain

Low Back Pain

Be careful when getting out of bed.  Turn to your side, bring your knees up, and then push up as knees swing down toward the floor.  Most importantly, always follow the advice "bend with your knees, not your back" – especially when lifting heavy objects.  Better still, don't lift heavy objects!

There is a particular exercise that has relieved back pain that occurs after prolonged periods of sitting.  The technique is: "Sit up straight.  Put your feet on the floor, then raise both feet off the floor at the same time 1 inch.  This lightens the abdominal muscles and is the sitting-up equivalent of the old bent knee sit-up exercises".  This exercise can be done almost anywhere.

Respiratory

Problems Associated With Snoring

Snoring usually worsens when an individual sleeps on his or her back, so sleeping on your side may alleviate the problem.  Those who have difficulty staying in a side-sleeping position may find sleeping with pillows behind them helps them maintain the position longer.

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May be useful: may help with
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may help with
Moderately useful: often helps with
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