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How to Improve Posture

How to Improve Posture

Good posture is a very important way to maintain a healthy mind and body. When you practice correct posture, your body is in alignment with itself. This can alleviate common problems such as back or neck pain, headaches, and fatigue. Being in good general health and standing tall will also boost your bearing and self confidence. Read on to learn how to improve posture.

How to Improve General Posture

Identify good posture. Good posture is nothing more than keeping your body in alignment. Good posture while standing is a straight back, squared shoulders, chin up, chest out, stomach in. If you can draw a straight line from your earlobe through your shoulder, hip, knee, to the middle of your ankle—-you've got it. To find yours:

Using a mirror, align your ears, shoulders, and hips. Proper alignment places your ears loosely above your shoulders and above your hips. Again, these points make a straight line, but the spine itself curves in a slight ‘S'. You'll find that this doesn't hurt at all. If you do experience pain, look at your side view in a mirror to see if you're forcing your back into an unnatural position. If you do not have pain, then posture should not be altered, because this could cause other problems.

Be a penguin. While you wait for a web page to load or the bread to toast, place your elbows at your side, and touch your shoulders with your hands.

Keeping your hands on your shoulders and your ears aligned, raise both elbows (count one, two) and lower them back down (count one, two). Do as many reps as your wait allows. You'll be surprised how much exercise fits into 30 seconds.

Practice yoga. Yoga is excellent for posture, and for your health in general. It can also improve your balance. Yoga works your core muscles, making them stronger and helping you to keep a proper body alignment.

Yoga will also help by teaching you on how to hold an erect posture while sitting, standing, and walking. Look for classes in your area, or scout YouTube for instructional videos.

Train your muscles to do the work. Exercises that strengthen the muscles across your upper back and shoulders will help you to maintain good posture. You don't need to develop a body builder physique. It's more important to build "muscle memory" so that you unconsciously and naturally maintain correct posture. When you lift weights, you should exercise the agonist and antagonist muscles evenly. This means that you should exercise your hamstrings as much as your quadriceps, chest as much as your back, and so on. This will help with correct posture. Try the following exercises with or without hand weights:

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