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The Ultimate Exercises to Improve Posture (Simple and Effective)

The Ultimate Exercises to Improve Posture (Simple and Effective)

Bad posture is a common problem for many people, as we live in a world full of activities leading to poor posture. Postural dysfunction (poor posture) is when our spine is situated in unnatural positions for extended periods of time, occuring as a result of one’s daily activities. [1]

Some causes of poor posture include: slouching in a chair, hunching your back, improper understanding of correct posture, leading a sedentary lifestyle, not having an exercise routine, poor core stability, and looking down at your computer and/or cell phone for extended periods of time. However, poor posture can easily be corrected.

Why you should fix your bad posture now

Bad posture doesn’t only make you look unhealthy and unattractive, it also causes several health problems. Take a look at this infographic to learn how bad posture makes you look and feel unhealthy and tired, and how good posture makes you look and feel healthy and confident:[2]

    Know if your posture is really bad

    Let’s examine some examples of poor posture versus good posture.[3]

    • Poor Posture: Rounded shoulders, slouching, head tilted forward, bent knees, pot belly
    • Good Posture: Straight line from your ear to your shoulder to your hip, balanced and upright posture

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      So, what can you do to correct poor posture?

      Simple exercises to improve your posture

      Poor posture can lead to serious neck pain and muscular imbalance. To correct this, we must activate our weak muscles while stretching our tight muscles.[4]

      The following video outlines several exercises you can do to improve your posture:

      Let’s examine these exercises you can do to improve your posture in greater detail:

      Exercise #1 – Reverse Plank Bridge

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        The Reverse Plank Bridge activates specific muscles while stretching key muscles like your pectoral muscles and the muscles in your neck. This exercise requires the following:

        1. Keep your arms straight and pull your shoulders back.
        2. Bring your shoulder blades together.
        3. Tuck your chin.
        4. Push your chest up and extend your spine.
        5. Your fingers can be pointed forward or backward.

        Exercise #2 – Arch Up

          The Arch Up exercise consists of three movements. All three movements require you to tuck your chin and do an external rotation of your arms (thumbs should go upward).

          1. Shoulder flexion. Push your arms and shoulder blades upwards and try to raise your arms as high as possible without bending them.
          2. Horizontal abduction. Lift your arms as high as possible to the side and try to bring your shoulder blades together.
          3. Shoulder extension. Push your arms upwards (thumbs up) and lift them as high as possible.

          Exercise #3 – Plank

            Planking

            is one of the simplest exercises that give you plenty of health benefits. Planking can improve your posture if done correctly. When doing the plank exercise, be sure to keep your legs straight, don’t allow your lower back to sink, and make sure you are looking down at the floor.[5]

            Exercise #4 – Posture Belt

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              Another way to fix your posture, especially your back posture, is to wear a posture belt. Wearing one during the first few hours of morning is good practice.The following steps were outlined by Pranayoga.

              1. Place the strap over your upper back and hold the ends in each hand.
              2. Drape each end of the strap over its respective shoulder.
              3. Cross the strap in the back holding one end in each hand.
              4. Pull the straps so that you feel it in your trapezius muscles and secure the ends at the front.

              Exercise #5 – Wall Angels

              This exercise is a simple way to test your posture. To do this exercise, simply lean back against the wall and lift your arms up and down (think of lying down in the snow and creating “snow angels”).[6]

              Make sure your rear is touching the wall and your back is flat against the wall. Watch the following video for a demonstration of this exercise:

              Exercise #6 – Up Against the Wall

              One of my favorite stretches is Up Against the Wall. Here you will put your hands behind your head, place your elbows to the wall and stretch. The following video provides a demonstration of this stretch:

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              Exercise #7 – Text Neck

              Lastly, this exercise will help you prevent bad posture, and it’s easy to do several times during the day. The exercise is simply to stop looking down at your phone. Obviously, we are not going to stop using our phones anytime soon, so a solution is this: bring your phone to you at eye level.

                Your posture is guaranteed to improve if you follow these 7 exercises; however, you must be disciplined and train your body to achieve good posture. Also, start today! It becomes much more difficult to improve bad posture the longer you put it off. Improving your posture will improve your life.

                Featured photo credit: Freepik via freepik.com

                Reference

                [1] ThePhysioCompany.com: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment of Bad Posture
                [2] Yalch Clinic: Bad Posture vs Good Posture
                [3] ThePhysioCompany.com: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment of Bad Posture
                [4] Calisthenicmovement: Improve Your Posture
                [5] NHS.UK: 10-minue abs workout
                [6] PhysicalTherapyVideo: Most Important Exercises to Help Pinched Nerve & Neck Pain

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                Last Updated on July 18, 2019

                10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                10 Small Changes To Make Your House Feel Like A Home

                Your house is more than just a building that you live in. It should be a home that makes you feel welcome as soon as you open the front door.

                Making your house feel like a home is not something that simply happens on its own. You need to make some changes to a house when you move in, to give it that cozy, warm feeling that turns it into a true home. To help you speed the process, follow this guide to 10 small changes to make your house feel like a home.

                1. Make the Windows Your Own

                When you move into a home, they often come with boring Venetian blinds or less than attractive curtains.

                One of the best ways you can instantly warm your home and make it showcase your style is to add some new window dressing. Adding beautiful curtains not only improves your home’s appearance, but it can also help to control the temperature.

                2. Put up Some Art

                If you have a lot of bare walls in your home, it will seem sterile no matter how beautiful your paint or wallpaper is.

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                Hanging art on the walls will instantly give it personality and make it feel like home.

                3. Improve the Aroma

                A house that is not filled with inviting smells will never feel like a home. There are loads of ways you can make your home smell nice. There are tons of air fresheners on the market you can use.

                Incense and scented candles are a nice option as well. Don’t forget that baking in a home is also a great way to fill it with an aroma that instantly smells like home as soon as you open the front door.

                4. Put out Lots of Pillows and Throws

                A great way to make your home look warm and inviting is to place lots of pillows and throws out on the furniture. It is much better to have too many pillows than not enough.

                There is nothing like the feeling of sinking into a cushiony pillow that feels like a cloud to make you feel like you are at home.

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                5. Instantly Class up Your Closet

                If your closet is filled with wire or plastic hangers, it will never truly feel homey. To instantly make your closet feel classy, change out your old hangers for wooden ones.

                Not only do they look great, but they are better for hanging your clothes as well.

                6. Improve Your Air Quality

                One of the most overlooked ways to make your house feel more like a home is to improve its air quality.

                The easiest and best way to upgrade the air quality in your home is to change the old, dirty filters in your furnace regularly. Get some air filters delivered to your home so that you always have some on hand.

                7. Fill it with Plants

                Another way to improve the air quality in your home is to fill it with plants. You should have plants in every room of your home.

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                They help to improve the air quality and they look beautiful. As well as making your home appear homier, plants also help to boost your mood and lower your stress levels.

                8. Change the Doorknobs

                Most people don’t really give their doorknobs a second thought unless they are broken. That is a shame because changing your doorknobs is an easy way to add personality to your home.

                Changing your old, boring doorknobs to new ones that are works of art will instantly brighten your home.

                9. Upgrade Your Tub or Shower

                There is nothing like luxuriating in a whirlpool bath or steam shower to make the cares of the day melt away. Your family deserves a bit of luxury when they are in their bathroom.

                Install a new shower or tub today to make your bathroom worthy of a place in your home.

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                10. Fresh Cut Flowers

                You can make any room in your house feel homier by placing a vase full of beautiful flowers in it. The gorgeous look and intoxicating aroma of fresh cut flowers will immediately brighten your day when you encounter them.

                You don’t have to make all these changes at once. Try one or two a day though, and your house will feel like a home before you know it. The trick is to constantly keep adding these homey touches to make your home a place worthy of its name.

                Featured photo credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-wooden-round-analog-wall-clock-on-brown-wooden-wall-121537/ via unsplash.com

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