First understand neutral alignment
It sounds obvious to be told to keep your body upright, relaxed and in neutral alignment, but so few of us do it. Your body is designed to take the load of gravity through your musculoskeletal system. However, you need to keep it in alignment, whether standing, sitting or even lying down. It’s ok some of the time to slouch for example. The problem is we do it far too often.
In fact, we can get away with being out of neutral alignment for a long time. But sooner or later, pain catches up with us. When you slouch or compensate your posture in any way, such as crossing legs when seated, leaning on one hip when standing, physiologically you shift the workload onto other parts of the body that were not designed to support the weight of gravity. Over time, this leads to wear and tear and predisposes you to injury.
Next do exercises that promote this posture
Your musculoskeletal system has a memory, often a faulty one, that holds you in a certain, painful position. We need to unlearn this faulty position and ‘install’ the neutral posture via awareness and targeted mobility, stretching, strengthening and proper breathwork. This video shows you what neutral posture is, and how to assume it. It is the first video you should look at, and over time, I will be posting the follow up exercise videos that should be done in order to achieve and maintain neutral posture.
Like everything in life, it requires dedication and awareness of your posture, to make the change from faulty body mechanics to good musculoskeletal health, and ultimately a painfree life.
Standing in Neutral Alignment
- Toes point forward, keep off medial aspect of rear foot
- Keep knees and hips slightly bent
- Spine elongated, with tailbone pointing to floor
- Crown of head reaching to ceiling
- Squeeze shoulder blades gently together then relax
- Chest in midpoint – not collapsed and not pushed out
- Keep shoulder tops away from ears
- Retract head by tucking chin into front of neck