Physiotherapists around the world have historically been nagging people to watch their posture for eons, probably with very little awareness of their own! I won’t lie I was trained to do the same and have done the same until I realised it really was a lost cause most of the time.
Not to say that those who I would ask to be more aware of their posture didn’t listen but rather it was really an unrealistic task for most. Sure most of us could be cued to move into the correct posture; shoulders diagonally down, long through the back of the neck, don’t lock your knees blah blah blah. But no one could sustain this for more than a few seconds.
There are many things that are required in order to have what is considered aesthetically “good posture”
- Mobility – your joints need to be able to move with ease other wise your muscles are likely to work against a significant amount of resistance from joint stiffness.
- Strength – if you really want to work on your posture …… move and move with some resistance, regularly!
- Endurance – really your muscles don’t just need to be strong but they also need to have the endurance to maintain a position for an extended period of time.
These are all things that are achievable but take time, commitment and consistency so by simply just asking you to watch your posture for the sake of better posture is a delusion.
Now don’t get me wrong I often have times in my day where I am standing in line at the supermarket where I practice my ‘good posture’ position, however I use this as a posture reversal exercise. When I do this I am unloading structures and giving some respite to others for a few minutes in my day.
I think there are 2 important things to note:
- There really is no such thing as a “bad posture”. There are many tasks in life that require you to adopt different body positions. Your body was made to move in a variety of ways and it is not necessarily the position that is the problem, the issue really is around sustaining any posture for an excessive amount of time, our bodies don’t like any static posture (no matter what it looks like) and this is where you can run into some problems.
“Your Best posture is your next one” Adam Meakins (The sports physio)
- The posture is only an issue if it causing you symptoms. There is a significant amount of variance with human morphology so not everyone will fit into the “neutral posture” position. If it is not causing you any issues, it’s probably normal for you!
If you are looking for someone to assist in reversing your posture and increasing general mobility, strength and endurance, I offer one on one and duo Pilates and movement therapy classes, click the link to book. Book a Pilates and movement session