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Benefits of Improved Posture and Exercising
We've all been told about posture for our whole lives. Whether someone is telling us to sit up straight or stop slouching, the message is the same. People need to stand or sit tall and straight all the time, or do we?
Well, the short answer is no. Our backs don't need to be straight as arrows all the time. Nor do we have to sit straight as a board at our school or office desks. However, that doesn't mean that posture is unimportant. It just means that we need to understand good posture better.
Good Versus Stiff Posture:
At some point, many of us have had it drilled into our heads that good posture means sitting or standing as straight as humanly possible. That usually isn't the case, though. Good posture will not help you at all if you're uncomfortable. So, good posture is less about stiffness and more about a state of poised comfort.
What is poised comfort? Well, it means having a generally good body shape. That means not slumping and slouching, but not trying to stretch your body beyond its limits, either. It's about finding out how straight you can sit comfortably. It's a little different for each person, but that's the basic idea.
Benefits Of Good Posture On The Body:
Good posture can do a lot of great things for the body. One of those things is that it can stretch out the muscles. When you add in some simple stretching exercises, you can increase your body's flexibility. That takes the stress off your back, which means that you'll be less prone to problems with lower back pain.
Keeping your back comfortably straight can also allow you to breathe better. It is, after all, difficult to get a deep breath when you're slumped over. By straightening up, you allow your lungs to fill fully when you breathe, which is much healthier for you.
Benefits Of Good Posture During Exercise:
Good posture also helps you to exercise more efficiently. One of the ways it does that is flexibility, as mentioned above. When your body is flexible, it makes the motions of exercise more comfortable. It also puts less strain on your muscles and joints, which does two things:
1. It allows you to exercise for a longer amount of time without tiring.
2. It makes your muscles and joints less prone to injuries.
Also, as mentioned earlier, good posture allows you to breathe better. During an exercise routine, especially an intense one, that's especially important. After all, if your body doesn't get enough oxygen, it can cause dizziness, fainting and other related problems when you exercise.
Another way that posture can benefit you when you exercise is that it increases your body's over all efficiency levels. It ensures that blood and nutrients are delivered to various parts of your body efficiently and even allow your joints to lubricate themselves better. So, it makes for a much smoother workout.
Having Good Posture:
Good posture sounds wonderful, and it can be. Unfortunately, though, most people don't pay enough attention to it. Even if you do care about having good posture, you may not have any idea how to go about it.
Well, as we've just gone over, good posture helps during exercise. The reverse is also true, though. There are plenty of exercises out there to improve posture and help with general body shape. Let's look at a few.
You've probably heard the old book trick. Walk with a book on your head to get good posture. Well, it's somewhat true, but you don't necessarily need the book. You can just pretend it's there and the effect is about the same. If you act like you're balancing something on your head, it will cause you to walk with better posture.
As far as how much to walk each day, that depends a bit on your individual situation. Start out slow and see what works for you. The more you can eventually walk the better, though. Also, it's important to walk slowly, when you start out each day. Then, you can gradually increase your pace.
Walking is a great exercise for posture improvement for a lot of reasons. One is, of course, that it's easy. It's also necessary, to a degree. We all have to get where we're going, after all. So, walking accomplishes two things at once, transport and posture improvement. Another reason it's so great for you is that it strengthens and lubricates all the muscles and joints in your back and surrounding area.
Stair climbing is great for your posture, if you do it right. Again, that means pretending to be balancing something on your head, as you exercise. Stair climbing also helps your whole body, in general, by involving your legs, heart and lungs, as well as your back.
Just remember, it's important to know your own limits. Stair climbing is a much different exercise from regular walking. You shouldn't try to take it on, if you aren't ready. Many people get into trouble with exercises because they want fast results, so they take on too much at once. Just take things slow and easy and you'll improve your posture in no time.
Posture Exercises Should Be Fun And Comfortable:
Finally, remember that posture exercises should be fun and comfortable. As far as the fun part goes, if you don't like walking or stair climbing, try something else. One idea might be riding a bicycle, but there are plenty of other options.
The idea here is that, if it's not fun, you won't do it. If you don't do it, it can't help you. So, you need to keep your exercise routines fun and that means adapting them to whatever you like.
Of course, you also have to be comfortable while exercising. If not, you're likely to get injured or quit because the exercises are painful. So, if you need to start out with slow, low-impact exercises, try water activities. Water takes a lot of stress off of your joints and makes it much easier to manoeuvre your way through any exercise routine.
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