The Ultimate Exercises to Improve Posture (Simple and Effective)

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Can You Reverse Bad Posture?

In order for you to reverse your bad posture, you must understand three things:

1) Awareness of What The Bad Posture Actually Is

If you have read Part 1: Here’s How To Tell If You Have Bad Posture of this series, then you should have identified which postures you currently have.

The most common are:

  • Forward Head Posture
  • Internally Rotated Shoulders
  • Kyphosis
  • Anterior Pelvic Tilt (Lordosis)

If you don’t know you have it, then you will never be able to fix it.

2) What Exercises Help Restore Proper Posture 

Once you know which of these postures you have, you can quickly refer to the section in this post that discusses the posture in detail.

Each section will show you the best exercises and stretches that you can perform to begin reversing the muscle imbalance you may have.

3) Identify The Daily Activities That Cause Poor Posture

Lastly, it is also important to be aware of your body position throughout the day.

Even if you perform the stretches and exercises outlined here, poor posture habits will negate the benefits of the treatment.  

This is why we will also go over quick cues that you can use to quickly fix any postural deviations you may have throughout the day.

If you follow the advice in this article, you will begin to notice an improvement in your posture in as little as 4 weeks.

Alright, let’s get started.

Video

2. Wall Angels

Wall Angels, or scapular wall slides, are a good way to strengthen your back and fix rounded shoulders. This exercise is meant to flatten your shoulders, extend your vertebrae, and work the muscles of your upper back. There are also a few variations you can try. To do this exercise, you need a flat wall to lean against.

Wall Angels Exercise 1:

1. Stand with your back flat against the wall. 2. Bend your knees to about 20 degrees. 3. Keep your lower back flat against the wall – avoid arching. 4. Rest the back of your head against the wall and keep your eyes forward and level to the ground. 5. Raise your arms to your side at a 90-degree angle to your body with your elbows bent and hands up. Your elbows and the back of your hands should be against the wall. 6. Breathe in and slide your hands and elbows up the wall until you feel some tension, breath out, and lower your arms back to 90 degrees. 7. Repeat this motion four to five times.

Wall Angels Exercise 2:

1. Position yourself as you did in steps 1-4 above. 2. Imagine a rod going through the center of your chest and treat this as a turning point. 3. While keeping your lower back flat against the wall, tilt your chest, upper back, and arms to one side as if you were rotating on the rod in your chest while sliding against the wall. 4. Come back to center and tilt to the opposite side. 5. Repeat this motion four to five times per side.

5 Forward Head Posture Exercises

Practicing good posture while performing your daily activities, combined with stretching and strengthening the muscles involved in forward head posture, can put you on the right path towards correcting this postural abnormality.

SHOULDER BLADE EXCERCISE

A shoulder blade exercises will help you improve y

A shoulder blade exercises will help you improve your neck posture. For this, you will only require a chair. The whole purpose of the exercise will help you raise the chest region that will ultimately improve your head and neck posture. You will be able to look straight.

Step 1

Sit straight with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle.

Step 2

Let go of your shoulders and just drop them. Your arms can also hang by your side.

Step 3

Next, squeeze both the shoulder blades together. Hold for a couple of seconds. Now release gently. Hold for a couple of seconds. Release.

Step 4

This completes one rep. Repeat around 10 times.

1. Lower Tummy Strengthening

It is important to strengthen your lower tummy muscles because these muscles work in partnership with the lower back. This means if the lower tummy muscles are weak the lower back can tighten up, which can lead to lower back pain.

A great exercise for the lower tummy muscles is shown in the image below. It is extremely gentle and also very effective. Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Breathe in and as you breathe out bring one knee in towards your chest and as you breathe in return the foot to the floor. Repeat this exercise six to eight times on each leg.

Can A Rounded Thoracic Spine (Kyphosis) Be Reversed?

Next up is kyphosis, aka the hunchback posture. This posture is extremely common if you tend to slouch whenever you are sitting.

It is also one of the most common predisposing causes of forward head posture.

Here’s what it looks like.

In order to reverse kyphosis, you need to

  • Strengthen the weak/elongated muscles of the upper back
  • Stretch the tight/contracted muscles of the upper chest

Weak/Stretched Muscles

  1. The Rhomboids
  2. The Mid and Low Traps

Your back muscles are meant to retract and bring items closer to you.

With a rounded spine, these muscles are always in the opposite position- protracted, lengthened, and weak. These muscles include the rhomboids, which are between your scapula (aka shoulder blade), and the middle and lower traps.

Tight/Overactive Muscles

  1. Chest
  2. Anterior Shoulders

With a hunched posture, the muscles on the anterior side of your torso are constantly flexed.

This includes your chest muscles and your anterior shoulders.

Bad Posture Exercises For Kyphosis

When you are in a kyphotic posture, the muscles of your anterior torso are tight and overactive.

Therefore, you must avoid chest-dominant pressing exercises that shorten these muscles further.

These include:

  • Bench Press
  • Push-ups
  • Dumbbell Flys

In general, pressing exercises are good for you and should be trained regularly.  However, if you have kyphosis, you should limit the amount of anterior pressing exercises you do.

Also, you want to avoid exercises that lengthen and stretch your back muscles even further.

These include:

  • Crunches
  • Sit-ups
  • Hamstring Stretches with a Rounded Spine

The Best Posture Correction Exercises For Kyphosis

So what exercises help improve postural misalignments in kyphosis?

First, let’s go over the best stretch.

The Double Overhand Stretch

The double overhand is a great stretch that can be performed just about anywhere. Place your hands against a wall. Keep your arms straight and push your chest and head down towards the floor. You should feel a great stretch along your chest and a tightening of your upper back muscles.

Hold this stretch for 20-30 seconds. Perform it often, at least once a day.

Thoracic Extensions

This stretch helps to re-position your spine back into its normal anatomical location. It also feels great.

Place your upper back on a foam roller, and extend or arch your upper back over it while keeping your low back neutral.

This foam roller is amazing.

You can do it while sitting on a chair, which is great for you while you’re at work.

Perform 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions daily.

You can even do this exercise while on your seat, using the top of the backrest as the fulcrum.

All Horizontal Pulling Exercises

Horizontal pulling exercises help to reset your natural shoulder position and offset the muscle imbalances that exist between the front and the back of your torso.

Be sure to keep your shoulders back and externally rotated when performing them.

We discuss the horizontal pull and the 5 other functional movement patterns here.

Band Pull Aparts

The band pull-apart exercise recruits all of the upper back muscles simultaneously.

Get a long-closed-loop resistance band and hold it at the level of your chest. From here, just pull it apart until it touches your chest.

Keep your elbows completely locked and retract your scapula at the end range.

If you don’t have one, order them here if you need (the lightest band should suffice)

Good Posture Tips to Reset a Rounded Thoracic Spine (At Home or At Work)

Use this sequence to reset your thoracic spine back into the correct position whenever you notice that you’re not in an optimal position.

  • Engage your ab muscles while sitting
  • Sit all the way back in your seat, keeping your upper back in contact with the backrest.
  • Shrug and roll your shoulders back to reset them to their natural position

Up next is the rounded shoulders.

Exercise 4: Glute Bridges


Lastly, we’ll move onto glute bridges to help awaken and strengthen the glutes. That’s because the glutes tend to become inactive and weakened as a result of prolonged sitting. And are now pulling the pelvis into that anterior pelvic tilt. It’s vital that you perform the prior stretches, first, however. That’s because research has shown that those tightened muscles we stretched will actually inhibit your glute activation. And make it hard for you to effectively use this exercise.

Now, to perform your glute bridges:

  1. Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat onto the floor
  2. Then, first move into posterior pelvic tilt by contracting your glutes and abs
  3. Once that’s set, use your glutes to thrust your hips into the air while keeping your back straight rather than arched
  4. Hold the top position while contracting your glutes before coming down for more reps.


Over time you can then progress to single-leg glute bridges as you get stronger. Doing so can help correct any strength asymmetries you may have in your glutes. Posture Workout Routine Takeaway

So, here are the two posture correction routines all summarized with rep range and timing guidance for each of the exercises.

Exercise 3: Stand And Reach


The next exercise we’ll use here will be used to help correct some of the asymmetries developed from slouching one way when sitting. Sitting this way has caused the muscles in your sides, such as your QL, to tighten up. And commonly droop your body one way as a result. For these, we’ll perform a simple stand and reach:

  1. Hold one hand at your hip
  2. And then extend up and back behind your body and a diagonal. Think about reaching towards the ceiling. Do experiment with different angles until you find the angle that creates the best stretch in your side.
  3. Hold the end position for about 5-10 seconds
  4. And then repeat for reps before switching to the other side.


You’ll probably notice however that one side is tighter than the other. This is a result of your slouching. In which case, you’d want to spend a little more time. And do more reps on that tighter side.

2) The Eagle:

With this exercise imagine opening up your arms just like an eagle spreads its wings. Stretching your arms overhead will open up the lungs. This boosts oxygen intake to stimulate tissue regeneration in the body and increase blood flow.

Instructions for Exercise:

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Start with arms lowered and adjacent to sides.
  3. Simultaneously lift arms above the head,
  4. Pause for a moment; and
  5. Lower arms back down to sides in a slow and controlled movement.
  6. Repeat for 1 minute.

4) Chin Tuck:

An opposing exercise to the butterfly is the chin tuck. This exercise provides balance to the opposite core muscles in the neck by strengthening the deep neck flexors. Performing the chin tuck helps balance the head and neck reducing the occurrence of forward head shift.

Instructions for Exercise:

  1. Focus on lifting chest toward the ceiling.
  2. Maintain head position with ears over the neck.
  3. Place 1 hand on forehead; and
  4. Gently push forward with about 10% of strength (muscles in neck should contract and head should appear immobile).
  5. Repeat for 1 minute.

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2. Neck Flexion (Suboccipital Stretch)


This will stretch the back of your neck muscles including the Suboccipital muscles.

  • First, tuck your chin in using 2 fingers of one hand.
  • Place your other hand on the back of your head and apply a gentle force down as you pull your head towards your chest.
  • When you feel a stretch at the back of your neck, hold the position for 20 to 30 seconds.
  • Repeat this stretch 3 times.

** Keep your chin tucked as you do this stretch.

REVERSE PLANK

Step 1

Step 1

Sit on the floor, extend your legs. Put both palms of hands on the floor behind you with your fingers tip pointing toward your back.

Step 2

Lean back and lift your back off the floor. Press your chest toward the ceiling and look at the ceiling to keep your head neutral and constant.

Step 3

Engage your abs to keep your stable, do not let your back drop. Hold the pose for at least 12 seconds.

If you feel a strain in your hands or wrists then, turn your fingers outward. Planks are one of the best posture exercises that strengthen the abdominal and lower-back muscles as well as the shoulders and upper back. Plank variations provide different levels of challenge and work several muscle groups.

Posture correction in children

Parents, it is important to remember that any pathology of the spine will disrupt the activity of internal systems and organs. So, any signal on the violations should be alerted.

If the baby is restless, the cause may be a beginning scoliosis. Finding the reasons for his discomfort, the child can not stand sitting too long in one place, begins to spin. The problem could be a reception at vertebrologist.Urgent doctor appointments are needed when signifi

Urgent doctor appointments are needed when significant deviations of the spine. Regular arrangement of blades and nipples baby is their presence at the level of one horizontal line. Symmetrical triangles are waist healthy children.

Usually observed violations encourage parents to register children in the pools or massages. Without denying the usefulness of these procedures, we note that decision problems, they do not. Scoliosis does not disappear. In high school, his development comes to the fourth stage, affecting internal organs.

Detecting the development of scoliosis, the specialist will recommend how you can change the way of life of the child, teach the baby how it is better to sit correctly. The ability to keep your back straight, swimming classes and sports clubs will serve the child well. The main thing to remember about safety and don’t overdo it.

Having had bad posture and back problems, it is not necessary to enroll in the hopelessly ill. If you pay attention to your posture, to study the special complexes of exercises, back problems can be avoided.

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