Subj: How to Fix Bad Posture with Corrective Weight Training.
We all want better posture rather you realize it or not.
We want good posture because we want the benefits associated with it.
The problem is, we hardly know what good posture is anymore.
Our environment is contorting our bodies without our knowledge. Being tethered to smart phones and computer screens has turned us into crook-necks and hunch backs.
It slowly and gradually took hold of us WITH our consent. If you only knew what it’s doing to you.
Day after day, month after month year after year has left us week and misshapen.
For that reason, we are now a product of our environment.
Being ‘shaped’ by your environment has a price that comes with bad posture:
- Poor breathing and Shortness of Breath
- Slowed Nervous Response
- Muscle and Joint Pain
- Tingling Sensations and Numbness
- Tension Headaches
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- General Discomfort
Not only does good posture make you look better, it also make you feel better. This is proven by science. (Remember the ‘Power Posing‘ lady?) Carrying yourself with a proud posture is shown for lower cortisol (stress chemical that damages your body) and boost testosterone.
Physiology effects psychology so, stand tall with your head and chest held high and you will feel better. Possess good posture and you will think and feel more positive. When you think and feel positive, good things happen.
Stand up straight and tall and you will breath deeper, think clearly, strengthen weak muscles and rid yourself of nagging pains.
How to Correct Your Posture with Weight Training
In this post I’ll show you how to get better posture using 5 exercises.
Be sure to maintain a straight back and neck and head and keep your eyes looking straight ahead. This creates spinal alignment and trains your muscles in the right position.
The amount of weight used is secondary to proper form. Although I recommend using more weight as you are able because this will further enhance your posture by strengthening your muscles and creating ‘muscle memory’ to hold correct posture.
Hex Bar Deadlifts
Easy to do. and easy to keep good form. Just tighten up your back, keep it nice and straight, stick your chest out (which will set your shoulders back), and lift with your legs.
Hex bar deadlifts are one of the best ways to improve your posture.
Like half deadlifts. rack pulls are great for improving posture because you can focus on contracting your back muscles and keeping them tight and engaged through the entire movement. Do them very slow with perfect form.
When you arch your back you need to exaggerate slightly. I found that I thought i was over-exaggerating my back bend when in fact I wasn’t even close to having a flat back.
This was because I was so used to lurching forward over the years that an unnatural position became natural.
So when I put my self in a natural position it felt too forced. But that is the case now. When you stand tall with perfect posture it might feel awkward at first.
Bent Over Barbell Rows / Landmine Rows
Keep your back straight and tight and pull the weight to your chest by drawing your elbows back.
This strengthen all the muscle that stabilize your core and pulls your shoulder blades back and down into their natural position.
Very slow and controlled. I’d recommend pull ups here but relatively few people can do full range of motion pull ups and engage the muscles near the shoulder blade that are necessary to train correctly.
Perform pull downs. locked into the machine station with chest high. As you breath in, puff your chest up like your reaching your chest to the ceiling. Pull the bar to your collar bone.
Prone Dumbbell Rows
Lay with your chest on the bench and let your arms hang down. puff your chest into the bench, lift your head up and back so your looking straight ahead, halfway up the wall, and pull the weight up to your torso with your elbows close to your sides.
The bench braces your torso and allows you to fully concentrate on engaging your back muscles.
Front Squat is a great posture correcting exercise because you must maintain balance and perfect form to complete each rep.
Have a friend video tape you from the side while you perform the exercises this way you can analyze the video and make adjustments. remember how your muscles feel while setting up and performing the exercises then watch the video and you ‘ll be able to make adjustments on the next set. Or get a GoPro to record yourself while squatting.
ears in line with your traps. your head goes forward your whole body will start to lurch forward. Stop it before it starts by keeping your head over your torso.
Tips to Improve Posture
1 hour a day a few times a week will help improve you posture significantly but you need to be aware of when your posture is bad and take steps to improve it throughout the day.
At work, get a standing desk (I have a Gladiator Workbench and love it 0 full disclosure, I’m a Whirlpool employee but I would buy it even if I didn’t work there because I like it so much.)
Walk 300 steps every hour. Sit on an exercises ball – it will make you balance
Stretch every day, especially after workout.
Sit up Straight
Sounds to simple to do anything but it works.
Sit up tall. Keep your head and neck straight. Image yourself elongating your spine. Practice this by sitting down and trying to touch the top of your head to the ceiling.
Do this at work while in meetings or at your desk. If you need to look down at a screen or keyboard, look down passed your cheek bones.
Bring your phone to your face to look at it. Don’t bow your head down. This causes ‘text neck’ and makes you look like a troll.
Do Yoga, Man
Do yoga, Or just do the pike position to straighten your back and set your shoulders in a natural position. This will retrain your muscles to maintain good posture. It must be done every day. Sit up straight. Get a standing desk.
Deep breathing – Big heavy, breaths where you inhale as much air as you possibly can, hold it for 2 or 3 seconds then slowly breath it back out.
This expands your rib cage by loosening up all the muscles and connective tissue between your ribs that has been ‘crunched’.
Breath in as much air as you can. Puff you chest up and out and relax your shoulders. Lift your chin up.
Try to look down your nose at things (without coming off as a self-righteous jack-ass).
Bad posture is created over time. You need to practice good posture more than bad posture in order to fix it permanently!
It’s a constant struggle between bad habits and good posture. Take the offensive and take corrective action with weights! If you need help, hire me as your online personal trainer and I will show you how to improve your posture!