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imageMany have memories from childhood that include the admonishment to stand up straight, stop slouching, or to sit up correctly in the chair that we occupied.  Turns out that this advice was very sound, because there are many benefits to having immaculate posture.  From health concerns to appearance, maintaining proper stance and spine alignment helps to create a much better you.  Please find below five benefits to proper posture:



1.  Improvement to the image that you project:  Standing tall and confident makes you appear more attractive and capable.  Appearing to slouch and hunch your shoulders has the effect of people believing that you are self-conscious, unkempt, and unpleasant, whether true or not, so the benefit of improving one’s posture is that the image exhibited for society to inevitably judge you on is an appealing one that speaks of assertiveness and confidence.



2. Less chance for neck and back pain/injuries:  Good posture helps to reduce strain on joints and muscles that can be overworked and tense from attempting to hold you up in an awkward manner.  The spine’s alignment will be correct with good posture, so upper back posture corrector pain can be decreased as well as the worry of slipped discs in the spinal column.  



3.  The ability to breathe deeply:  Sitting properly allows the lungs to fully expand, so therefore air flow is increased.  Increased airflow means more oxygen to the brain, which leads to clear thinking and creative thoughts.  This is why they emphasize proper posture in yoga and meditation classes, because it truly frees the mind up for focused, unhindered thinking.  Sitting upright in class or work is imperative because more satisfactory work will be accomplished with an oxygenated brain!



4.  Better fitness:  Great posture has the benefit of less wear on the joints, as was previously explained.  What this means in terms of fitness is that there will be less fatigue, quicker recovery, and minimized pain from aching joints and weary muscles.  Plus there’s the perk of getting more air into the lungs from the better breathing.



5. Prevents improper spinal alignment:  Making sure to live with correct posture will allow you to not have your spine fix into a hunched or otherwise incorrect position.  Having that happen could lead to constricted nerves and blood vessels, misused muscles, and improperly cared for joints, all of which can lead to headaches, fatigue, and discomfort.  



If proper posture has not been cultivated, there are tips that you can take to rectify the situation.  



-Avoid carrying heavy items daily, particularly on the same side every day.  This throws off the body’s alignment and causes strain.  Investing in a rolling bag for books, laptops, and other work/school materials would be beneficial.





-Take a pilates or yoga class.  They teach many techniques for good posture, proper breathing, designates stretching as important, and improves overall fitness.



-Plant feet firmly on the floor while seated so as to maintain balance.



-Visit a chiropractor for a proper assessment of your body’s alignment, especially if bad posture has been present for many years.



-Invest in good equipment for resting, such as a suitable chair for working, a bed with the proper firmness for sleep, pillows that work well for spinal alignment.  



As we always tell our Chicago physical therapy patients, small things matter quite a bit, so work on your posture and live longer.

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