4 different type of bad posture and what you can do to fix it.
An ideal posture involves having a neutral spine so that there is minimal stress and strain on the body, which in turn, allows the muscles to work efficiently.
Now think about how your posture is when you are using your mobile phone or sitting at your desk
If you are someone that sits with a forward head posture (meaning you hunch forward) then your 5kg ball (AKA your head) is weighing down on the front of your body causing all sorts of imbalances. You may find you have a sore back and neck at the end of the day or you may get regular headaches. Postural deviations such as kyphosis (exaggerated rounding of the upper back) or lordosis (excessive inward curvature of the lower back) occur when the spine deviates from its neutral position.
To many people these days are walking around with bad posture which is contributing to a number of health problems. As a theatre Nurse, I have witnessed time and time again, people coming in for surgeries that may (or may not have) been avoided if they had addressed their poor posture early on.
Pilates is known to help improve poor posture as it is focused on stretching the muscles in your body that are tight and strengthening the muscles in your body that are weak.
I wanted to explain a few of the most common postural deviations and mention a few of the areas that you need to stretch and strengthen in order to correct each type of posture. If can relate to any of these postural deviations, I highly recommend giving Pilates a go or if you are unsure, ask your physiotherapist whether Pilates is right for you!
Kyphosis (Rounding the upper back)
It often results from poor long term postural habits of “slumping” at the computer, whilst driving, sitting poorly on the couch, or poor sleeping posture. It may also be exacerbated by poor eyesight or hearing problems.
To help correct a Kyphosis, you need to:
Stretch: Chest and neck muscles
Strengthen: Upper back and shoulder muscles.
Lordosis (excessive curve of the lower back)
To help correct a lordosis, you will need to:
Stretch: Your back and hip flexors
Strengthen: Glutes, abs and possibly your hamstrings
To help correct a sway back posture, you need to:
Stretch: Hamstrings, neck and chest
Strengthen: Hip flexors, glutes, side abs and upper back
To help correct a flat back, you need to:
Stretch: Hamstrings, glutes, abdominals and neck muscles.
Strengthen: Hip flexors, quads, upper back and neck muscles.
Pilates is all about stretching and strengthening, hence why it is so good at correcting posture. I highly suggest finding a local studio or speaking to your GP or physio and finding out if a Pilates program would be suitable for you.
If so, check out THE DUO PILATES METHOD – an online 12 week stretch/strengthen Pilates workout program designed to help you improve your posture and overall core strength. Click on the link below to find out more!