Good posture is about positioning and carrying your body in a way that causes as little stress as possible.  For many people, poor posture is a result of years of bad habits. Poor posture doesn’t just affect how we move.  It affects our digestion, our mood and even how we think. 

Have you ever noticed how a tension headache affects your whole body?  You probably put it down to stress, but what if it was related to a postural habit that once changed would leave you with more energy and clearer thoughts? Notice how you tend to sit in your chair, do you 
slump and round your shoulders? Do you jut your chin out to see what is on the screen?  

Do you take regular breaks to move around or do you get so focused on your work that the clock changes from 9AM to 4PM without you moving from your desk?  Bringing awareness to how you hold and carry yourself is the first step to making a change.  The best way to create positive action around this is by performing simple stretches and mobility exercises frequently throughout your day.  

Here are 5 quick exercises that you can do to improve your posture without even leaving your desk. Benefits include increased oxygen to your brain and prevention of lower backache which may result in less sore muscles at the end of the day. If you would like to feel fresher at the end of the day and have more energy then these are easy steps to take you there.

  • Shoulder Shrugs
  • Neck Stretch
  • Thoracic Rotation
  • Roll Downs
  • Breathe

Shoulder Shrugs
Lift your shoulders up to your ears, hold for a moment and then release completely.  Repeat this a few times feel that shoulder tension melting away.

Neck Stretch

Sit up tall, reach your hands underneath your seat and gently pull on the left hand side as you exhale and drop your right ear down to your right shoulder. Breathe in to bring your head back to centre and repeat on the opposite side. Gently pull on the right side of your seat as you exhale and drop you left ear to your left shoulder. Inhale and return head to center.  Repeat a few each side.

Chair Twist
Move your chair out from your desk.  Place your right hand on your desk and your left hand on the back of your chair.  Inhale and as you exhale rotate your upper body to the keeping your hips facing the front as much as possible. Inhale and exhale see if you can get a little further.  Return to the front and repeat on the other side. Repeat both sides a couple of times.

Chair Roll Downs
Start by sitting with your shoulders over your hips, facing forward.  Drop your chin to your chest and allow you body to roll down until the top half of your body falls over the legs.  Take a nice deep breath there and then begin to roll back up from the base of your spine, one vertebrae at a time until your shoulders are once again over your hips, shoulders are relaxed and head resting ears above your shoulders. Repeat this sequence a few more times. 

Close your eyes. Take 5 full, deep breaths and with each exhale feel tension completely release from your body. Open your eyes and notice the changes that have occurred with this simple process.

Set yourself a goal to repeat this sequence at least 2-3 times throughout your workday. Combining these exercises with regular mini walks around the office and plenty of drinking water will see your body reaching the end of your work day tension and stress free.

What Do You Do To Improve Your Posture?