Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Good Posture – The Ideal

Good posture is the result we are trying to achieve by doing posture exercises.

So what does good posture look like?

From Muscles: Testing and Function with Posture and Pain.  Kendall, McCreary, Provance, Rodgers, Romani

Often a picture says a thousand words. I have included a diagram of a front and side view as well as a description of what should be happening at each body part.

Front View
Head – the head is in a neutral position. Meaning not tilted to the left or right.
Shoulder – the shoulders are level
Hip Joints – the hip joints are level
Knee Joints – the knees are level
Feet – both feet are pointing straight ahead

Side View
Head – the head is in a neutral position. Meaning not tilted forward or not tilted backwards. Notice the back of the ear is directly over the top of the middle shoulder.
Neck – the neck has a normal curve. A normal curve is a slight forward convex curve.
Shoulder Blades – the shoulder blades are flat against the upper back
Upper Back – the normal curve of the upper back is a slight convex curve pointing backwards
Lower Back – the normal curve for the lower back is a slightly convex curve pointing forward
Pelvis – the pelvis is in a neutral position (*See below*)
Hip Joints – the hip joint is in a neutral position, meaning not bent or not hyperextended.
Knee Joints – the knee is in a neutral position, meaning not bent or not hyperextended.
Ankle Joints – the ankle joint is in a neutral position, meaning the angle between the leg and the sole of the foot is 90 degrees.

*The front and back muscles (core muscles) that attach to the pelvis maintain its ideal position i.e. the upward tension of the abdominal muscles is counter balanced by the downward tension of the hip flexors; the upward pull of the back muscles is counter balanced by the downward pull of the gluteal (backside) muscles.*

Posture is a habit. It is something under our control. We decide whether we want it to be a good habit or a bad habit. Posture exercises will help you make it a good habit.

2 comments:

Elena from Posture Bra said...
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Lena said...

I would love to see pictures of how good posture looks when sitting, which is how most of us spend our days at our desk jobs... Thanks for this great website!