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Poor posture? Fix it with whole body vibration exercises

03rd June 2016

If you walk with a hunched back, or slouch at your desk and repeat this poor posture day after day, you risk to change your body’s shape and alignment, and this change in posture can take a toll on your health when you least expect it.

Your posture does not change overnight; it’s the result of years of activity and stress, and is strongly influenced by your lifestyle and by the number of hours spent at your desk or exercising. Maintaining an active lifestyle and practicing physical activities like strength workouts and stretching exercises can go a long way in avoiding poor posture and its health effects, which include muscle tightness or weakness, cramps and pain, joint pain, constricted blood vessels and nerves, damaged vertebral discs and so on.

The first step in fixing poor posture is identifying its causes, and paying attention to the way you sit, stand and walk, so as to correct your body’s postural misalignment.

Common posture problems and their causes

The hunchback for example appears when the curvature of the thoracic spine accentuates and starts forming a C shape at the top. This deformation of the vertebral column occurs in people who sit for several hours with poor posture, usually hunched over the desk, and manifests through pain in the back, shoulders and neck areas. But it can also lead to more severe effects, such as the tightening of the chest muscles and the excessive loosening of the upper back muscles.

Sitting slumped in your chair, without any support for the lower back, often feels more comfortable than sitting upright, because your core and back muscles don’t have to work too much to maintain proper posture. Still, this position can affect your posture in the long run, because it places excessive strain on the muscles that support the spine, leading to pain and discomfort.

In people who spend long hours sitting without stretching, the hip flexors can tighten, and this can cause the pelvis to tilt forward, leading to the so-called anterior pelvic tilt. This problem of poor posture manifests through lower back pain, and can make you look bloated even if you have little to no belly fat, because the stomach protrudes outwards.

The forward head is also a common posture problem and appears in people who sit hunched over for long hours, and leads to pain in the neck, upper body and shoulder areas. These muscles can weaken in time and this can affect the natural curvature of the spine, especially in the cervical and thoracic areas.

Postural dysfunction can be the result of muscle tightness or weakness, sedentary lifestyle, joint stiffness, lack of awareness of correct posture, decreased fitness, poor core stability and strength, occupational demands or poor ergonomic work-stations.

Good posture is easy to recognize: your body is balanced upright, with a straight line from the ear to the shoulder to the hip, and normal spine curvatures. Poor posture on the other hand can take many forms, such as slouching, rounded shoulders, tilting the head forward, keeping the knees slightly bent, hunchback, excessive arch of the lower back, pot belly or locked knees.

To correct your posture, keep your body in perfect alignment, maintain the spine’s natural curvature, the neck straight and the shoulders parallel with the hips. Keep the back and shoulders relaxed, pull in your abdomen, balance your weight evenly on both feet and keep the feet hip-width apart. Avoid tilting your head forward or sideways, keep your knees relaxed but your legs straight, and avoid tilting the pelvis forward.

If your poor posture is not caused by permanent damage of the muscles, spine, bones or joints, you should be able to fix it by correcting your body’s position and alignment when standing or sitting, or through physiotherapy and exercise.

Hypervibe WBV exercises to improve your posture

Depending on the cause of poor posture, physiotherapy and exercise may help in significantly minimizing and even eliminating the dysfunctions and correcting your posture.

Manual therapy and soft tissue massage, postural taping, postural education, assessment of postural habits, dry needling, joint mobilization, corrective exercises, electrotherapy, flexibility, strength and posture exercises, stretching, Pilates and Yoga movements can be used for correcting poor posture.

Below are some Hypervibe movements to practice if you decide to rely on whole body vibration exercises for strengthening your back and core muscles and correcting your posture.

We encourage you to practice these exercises at least twice a week, for 15 minutes (1 minute per movement), as they’ll help you build stronger muscles that support your body better, increase your flexibility and improve joint mobility. 

exercises for poor posture

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