Here’s How to Fix Your Bad Posture

Do you feel like you have good posture? The majority of us have deteriorating posture, thanks to our sedentary lives and jobs that are increasingly reliant on tech. While we can’t necessarily change careers, many of us would like to slouch less. So we jam our shoulders back and crank our chins up whenever we become self-aware—but it never seems to help in the long term, does it? That’s because enjoying good, easeful posture, requires a more mindful and nuanced approach.

Firstly, what is ideal posture anyway?

While you don’t want to slouch, you don’t want to overdo it by sticking your chest and tailbone out either. You want to create a gentle anatomical line—your ears, shoulders, and hips should all be in a straight up and down plane.

You should still have a gentle curve in your spine, but not too much. Avoid slumping your head forward and twisting your spine when sitting or standing. Both hip bones and shoulders should be facing forward like car headlights—no torque.

Shoulder blades should be sitting on the back, not rolled forward. And your chin should be parallel to the ground.

Okay, got the basics? Now here’s what you have to do to make your dream posture a reality.

PrintCorrect posture and bad posture

It’s not all about your shoulders.

Pulling your shoulders back when you notice yourself hunched over at your desk isn’t going to do much for your posture. For most of us who are slumped over computers all day long, working on extensively strengthening the entire upper back is crucial.

When you spend a lot of time slouching, staring down at your phone or typing on a keyboard, your upper back muscles can succumb to a sort of amnesia. They get sleepy, forget what their job is and effectively turn off—which allows your shoulders to droop forward like a hunchback.

By adding in a regular exercise series (like these) to reactivate and awaken your upper back muscles, they’ll start holding your shoulders on your back again. It’s a great way to counteract some of the upper body damage you’ve done by sitting all day.

Core is important (but not as important as you think).

Let’s be clear—cranking out a bunch of sit-ups isn’t going to single-handedly help your posture (in fact, they might even harm it). While a strong core does protect and support your trunk, unless you’re actively engaging it as you sit, it isn’t going to straighten your posture out.

That said, a weak core will only put you at greater danger for back injury, so don’t slack. Make sure you are regularly doing planks (classic and side) throughout the week to keep the structural support of your trunk engaged.

Young attractive smiling woman practicing yoga, sitting in Half Lotus exercise, Ardha Padmasana pose, working out, wearing sportswear, grey pants, bra, indoor, home interior background, cat near her

It’s mostly about spinal energy and lengthening.

Proper spinal alignment is all about maintaining the natural curvature of your spine. While you don’t want your back to look like an “S” curve, you don’t want it to be straight as an arrow either. The gentle curve in your spine exists to absorb shock and make high impact movements easier on the body.

The most beneficial way to improve your posture is to imagine your spine energetically lengthening from your tailbone into your skull. It’s the perfect mindful switch to regain your posture—without building unnecessary tension or forcibly contorting body parts.

This simple energetic shift will encourage everything to anatomically fall into place.

Is improving your posture easy?

Certainly not, but is it a worthwhile pursuit to put an end to back pain and look more confident? Absolutely.

This week, try to be more conscious of your posture, when it’s at its weakest and what small tweaks you can make to improve it. You’ll be grateful you did.

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Images via Getty

83 comments

Gino C
Gino C9 days ago

Thanks for posting

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Naomi D
Naomi Dreyer11 days ago

The most beneficial way to improve your posture is to imagine your spine energetically lengthening from your tailbone into your skull.

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Louise A
Louise A16 days ago

thanks for sharing

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Toni W
Toni W21 days ago

TYFS

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Toni W
Toni W21 days ago

TYFS

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David C
David C22 days ago

Do your best, thanks

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Carole R
Carole R22 days ago

Thanks for posting.

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Ruth S
Ruth S23 days ago

Thanks.

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Ruth S
Ruth S23 days ago

Thanks.

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Kathy K
Kathy K24 days ago

Thanks.

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