It’s important to find the correct healthy posture for you.
Every body is different, and your body has been shaped by your lifestyle, work and recreational activities.
Whether you spend your working hours painting ceilings or sitting at a computer, or you carry a growing baby on your hip, these experiences can put your body out of balance and create unwanted stress. We all have our imbalances, and every body needs fine tuning.
At Designer Fitness, good posture is the foundation for all the exercises we do to bring your body into balance and improve your fitness. It’s the first thing we work on, in every session.
I coach you to focus on being in the alignment that creates your specific correct posture, the posture that is right for you. This may feel surprisingly awkward or unnatural at first. In fact, just getting everything lined up properly may feel like a workout in and of itself!
The objective is to create space and length in the spine. Thinking tall and following the elements of good posture outlined below can even out the muscles around the spine, allowing the spine to relax. This lets the central nervous system work properly, so that all your body systems and organs can function at their best.
Remember, your body can have some quirks and issues that may need to be gently adjusted before you can comfortably achieve good posture. So, use the following as a general guideline only, and practice in front of a mirror.
Be sure to see me soon if you are uncomfortable doing any of the following.
Elements of Better Posture
- “Puppet on a String” – lift yourself up from the top of your head as if your head is holding up your body.
- “Hang Up” Your Abdominals – and lift your chest, like hanging up your dressy clothes to keep them in the best condition.
- Shoulders Back – it may help to lift them, roll them back, then press them down.
- Head on Straight – check to see if it’s tilted.
- “Dime Pinched” – pinch your buttocks cheeks together.
- Knees Soft (locking your knees puts a lot of stress on them…and on your back!).
- “Zipper Zipped” – pull in your abdominals, like you’re zipping the zipper on your tightest fitting jeans.
- Feet Relaxed – balance on all four corners of your feet.
When you achieve the last four, you should feel a pelvic tilt (forward and up) that helps elongate and straighten your spine.
It’s really important that you focus on maintaining proper posture throughout the day. The key is to consistently focus on keeping proper alignment, whether you’re sitting, standing or walking.
Good posture will make you feel, look and perform better. Start noticing yours!
Enjoyed seeing you present this to the ABWA Sunrise Chapter on Wednesday. Practicing this has definitely changed my body and self image!
Hope the ABWA ladies and IBE members have practiced this since your presentations! Anyone have something to say about their experience?
I had a great time with both groups. I love teaching people about the “ME” System. I know it makes people think about how they could be using their bodies more efficiently throughout the day.
I get excited when I hear people communicate in the “ME” language. I did have a couple people telling me about their “dimes” and “zippers” later that day.
One warning I have is that it is a system. You need to think of everything as a whole. If you only focus on one or two of the steps you overcompensate in other areas. You could create an imbalance elsewhere. You need to make an effort, as there is a process you have to go through until it becomes natural and a part of your life. But…once you learn it you will never forget it, because it makes so much sense.
Darla, I was so totally impressed with your presentation. it was the full package!!! I look forward to working out with you soon.
Coral, thank you. I hope you can start to use some of the ideas that I presented!
Thank you Susan
I can’t tell you how much applying the “ME” System will help. It gives you excellent reference points that you can compare against over time…and as you improve. Exercise is movement – and we move all day long. The more you focus on keeping correct posture and alignment the more efficient your workouts will become. So why not make everyday life a workout first!
Great job on Wednesday, Darla! Even though you didn’t have much time, what I learned has stayed with me. Thanks!
Marcia you said the magic word, “TIME”
That is the number one reason the “ME”System works .
We are all sooooooo busy in our lives that we do not make time for ourselves .
The “Me “System takes that in to account in making all movement beneficial . I know I have said it alot but exercise is movement, so let’s start with making our everyday activites a workout, which will keep us injury free and feeling inspired to do more.
Once you feel that you can take control of your body through using the “ME” System. You will take the next step in making more TIME for YOU!
Darla, thank you for speaking to our ABWA group on Wednesday! It was really interesting to hear what we do everyday, and what we can do to fix it and strengthen our bodies, and make life a workout! When I came home that day, I realized I was hunching over my computer (hadn’t realized it before) and part of the reason was that my screen was too low! I fixed it, and am now trying to sit up straight – you’re right – it’s a workout! Thanks again! I look forward to learning more!
Angela, you’re right. Life is a workout because every day, every minute our bodies work at some level (and I don’t mean in exercise mode)… but if you think about muscles are always activate as are the major body functions of digestion, respiration, metabolism, elimination and assimilation.
How can they work if our spine, which houses the communication network to these systems is all “kinked up”? I encourage you to focus as much as possible on holding a healthy posture.
In just a short time you will be amazed at how much better you feel!
I thoroughly enjoyed your presentation Darla and have been trying for follow your example. I too, seem to be short on time and I chuckle to myself as I think of what you said as I am sitting, walking and driving etc.
Thanks so much for the tips.
I know exactly what you mean – trust me, the human factor takes over. I myself am continuously in different positions, spotting my clients for safety. But just like everyone else I have repetition in my movement. I have to follow and think about the same principles that I described to you. That’s why I say “life truly can be a workout, why not take advantage of it?” Let’s stop worrying about what we don’t have time for and focus on what we have control over and that is paying attention to posture and alignment. You will feel Instantly better, which will become self-reinforcing…and before you know it, Ta Da! You are one step closer to your goal!