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How Can I Improve My Posture?

Over the years many clients have asked me that question. Usually they are referring to their shoulders. If you are a more visual person, feel free to scroll down to the YouTube videos below that illustrate a few simple, fun things you can do to instantly improve your posture. 

If you like to study things in detail, I highly recommend the book pictured above, Move Your DNA, by Katy Bowman. Bowman is a biomechanist who is passionate about “exercising less and moving more”. She explains how movement effects us all the way down to the cellular level, the neurological level and even down to our DNA. She talks about “movement nutrition”, how we need different kinds and amounts of movement just like we need different kinds and amounts of food in order to be healthy. So in today’s industrialized, technology driven society, most of us live in a state of “malnourishment” in terms of our movement nutrition.  

Although her book is science based, it is also very readable and easy to understand. She also offers lots of practical ideas and ways to engage in more nourishing movement on a daily basis. One example of this is progressive hanging,which is one of the Mindful Movement videos below. 

One of the costs of living our current lifestyle of convenience is our lack of movement, especially our lack of varied movement. Bowman draws a fascinating metaphor between animals living in captivity, such as orca whales, and humans today in modern America. Essentially, we are also living in captivity, not in our natural environment that our bodies were built for. In our natural environment we would be walking almost everyday, squatting, climbing, swimming, etc. Like our close cousins, the chimpanzees, we would be “hanging around” and swinging in our daily lives. 

If you really want to improve your posture and your overall health, I encourage you to 1) Be curious about your body and movement 2) Be willing to move in a different way than you’re used to 3) Allow yourself at least a few minutes each day to focus on being and feeling, rather than doing and thinking. And, by all means, have fun!