Due to the nature of my work, it is very difficult for me not to look at people´s postures, whatever their age. Through work, habits or hobbies many of us have poor posture that will cause problems later on so I thought this month I would give you a couple of common examples which are easy to correct.
The shoulder girdle extends from the base of the neck to the bottom edge of the large pectoral muscle. What it does is to join the arm to the trunk. In these joints are a number of muscles and if posture is bad they can become either stiffer or more flexible than normal and as a result can cause muscle tension or spasms and back problems.
Hunched shoulders is an obvious example of bad posture where the shoulders are underneath the ears or rolled forwards. This posture can cause a stiff neck or upper back problems given that the trapeze muscle is connected to the base of the skull and the shoulder blades and collar bone (which form the shoulder girdle). Problems caused include headaches, dizziness from a stiff neck and the most common one is tension – those infamous knots that we unfortunately have.
Having shoulders constantly rolled forwards can cause problems with the spine, causing those pronounced curves that you see in the upper back, known as a hunched back.
One way to counteract this is simply being aware of how we are holding our shoulders and keep them away from our ears and keep the shoulder blades in line.
We don´t tend to notice our posture when we are in the same position for a long time, for example using our mobile or the computer. Simply being aware of good posture would solve the main problem and the rest would be solved by working to tone the muscles needed in order to be able to maintain good posture and increase flexibility in other muscles.
So to summarise, the correct posture, some muscle toning and above all being posture aware will help avoid many of the aches and pains we experience these days which we think are inevitable but they aren´t.
A couple of exercises which you could do on your own:
Shoulder circles .. ten times in one direction and then ten times in the opposite direction.
Lift and drop the shoulders ten times.
Raise your arms and make a circular movement, then repeat in the opposite direction, again ten times.
On other days, circular movements of the neck, stretching it with head tilted.
Of course, this is just a small sample but something is better than nothing and doing these twice a day, morning and night, will make us feel better.
I hope you give this a try and it works for you.
Next month we will look at the pelvic waist .. the area where the pelvis, spine and hip join.
Thank you for reading
GABRIELA AUZOBERRIA CALVO
PILATES GRAN ALACANT