Upright posture in America is like a dying breed. Instead, our modern lifestyle creates chronic back pain, forward head and neck tension, shoulder dysfunction, hip and knee joint replacement population.
Judging by the people I observe in the gyms, parks, stores, airports, beaches, and in the office, very few of them even know what the upright posture is. Sadly, it includes some fitness pros who promise to improve your posture without understanding the correct alignment themselves.
The good thing is there are people out there who devoted their professional lives to figuring out the forgotten rules of proper alignment. These include Pete Egoscue, Katy Bowman, Kathleen Porter, and many others. Integrating these various approaches, I am going to show you what the upright posture is. And how to move towards this simple, functional, and elegant alignment. Pun intended.
The upright posture is very simple
Let’s look at the drawings below:
- On a front view, the aligned body is symmetrical from left to right.
- From a side view, the loading joints (shoulders, hips, knees, and ankles) are stacked up along the vertical axis.
To make it even more clear, I highly recommend watching the 9-minute video below. It was produced by Kathleen Porter, the director of the Center for Natural Alignment in Portland, Oregon.
The next question would be “How to restore the upright posture?”
It may feel like a daunting task, considering the number of years you were misaligned. Everything is easier when broken into smaller, more manageable tasks. I will provide a list of those tasks in my next post.
Meanwhile, you need to start with your own posture assessment. This will be your homework: to figure out how your own alignment is different from the upright posture picture above.
All you need is a full size mirror and maybe a friend who can look at your posture together with you. After all, another pair of eyes can notice things that you did not.
This 15-minute video will help you with this process:
If you would rather have a written description, please refer to this post on Posture Self-Evaluation.
See you next week!
Be Upright. Be Happy. Live Pain Free.
Learn how YOU can restore your posture at my Upright Posture Fitness Studio in Hudson, MA