Your posture is a great way to show how good you feel, how confident your are, and definitely a way to exude a more ageless appearance.
Let’s agree that a slouchy posture makes a person look tired, sometimes even sad, and when a person’s posture is constantly bent over — they look older. In comparison a person with good posture appears happier, more confident, and vibrant.
As we get older we also lose bone density, muscle strength, and a general weakening of our posture. So it’s to our benefit to maintain our good posture today so we can stay strong and stand tall in our later years.
Here are some simple stretches to combat 2 types of upper-body postural problems — the excessive forward head lean and rounded shoulders.
The excessive forward head lean happens because the front neck muscles become tight and shortened while the upper-back and neck muscles become weaker. This happens mainly from working a desk job with poor desk area ergonomics and texting with bad posture.
Try these stretches to relieve the tightness in your neck area.
a) Place one arm behind your back to keep the shoulder down
b) Using the other hand, gently pull at the side of the head for 30 seconds
It takes at least 30 seconds for your Golgi tendon – a sensory receptor organ in the muscle fibers — to relax.
c) Then gently pull the head forward, and then back — holding for 30 seconds
d) Repeat on the other side
Another way to stop a slouchy posture is to not slouch while texting. Look straight ahead when you text — not down and hunched over.
Round shoulders may happen due to bad habit, carrying a heavy backpack, poor sitting/work station posture, and bad posture in when using your cellphone.
Part of the reason for rounded shoulders is because the chest muscles are very tight. Other reasons are because the back muscles — rhomboid, serratus anterior, lats — to name a few are weak.
Try these stretches to relieve some of the tightness you’re experiencing in your chest and neck area.
a) Clasp your hands behind you stretching your chest area
b) Pull in your chin and ‘close your ribs’ by drawing in your stomach
c) Hold this stretch for 30 seconds
d) Add neck stretches to also relieve neck tightness which usually accompanies rounded shoulders
DO NOT stick out your chest or rib cage during stretch
I hope you find these stretches useful, relieving, and help you project more confidence. Here is a video showing them again and me promoting my Better Posture in 30 Days program.
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