You have surely heard the expression, “Check yourself before you wreck yourself!” I’m pretty sure that expression was not initially used to refer to posture. If you think about it, it really does make a lot of sense when we consider our posture and how we carry ourselves throughout the day. Not convinced? Allow me to explain!
I had the opportunity this year at the 2016 PMA conference in Phoenix to take a workshop with Joy Karley all about postural assessments. Some of you may already be yawning at the thought of two hours of discussing posture! I’m here to tell you it was incredibly interesting and very useful information for all of us. If you’ve come to my class you’ve undoubtedly heard me say, “You may notice one side is more flexible or stronger than the other” or “Pay attention to how you sit, stand, carry your baby and purse throughout the day – what side do you favor?” All of these are posture questions and posture-related body issues.
Posture issues go deeper than sitting up straight or standing tall. Posture affects our feet and whether we’ll have bunions later in life. Posture affects our hips and whether we’ll end up needing a hip replacement. Posture impacts our shoulders and neck and whether we will be plagued with impingements and range of motion issues. Poor posture can wreck our bodies.
When you consider your posture, you need to consider more than do I slouch when I sit or stand. Look at your feet – do you pronate or supinate? Do you tend to stand with more weight on one foot versus the other? Do you hike one hip up to carry a child through the day? Is your pelvis anteriorly (butt and gut stick out) or posteriorly tilted (tucked)? Are your shoulders rounded forward? How do you carry your head – is it in front of your shoulders or do your ears line up over the shoulders? All of these are posture considerations that a can lead to issues if we don’t address them.
The good news is that is where Pilates comes in. Pilates teaches us how to align our bodies. Pilates brings us back to our good posture and makes that feel normal again. I often hear Pilates students say after a few classes they notice they sit up straighter because it feels natural to them.
Not sure how you are doing on your posture? Come for a private and we’ll do a little assessment of your posture and alignment followed by a workout designed for your needs!