As time progresses, it becomes almost impossible to maintain proper posture as poor habits such as slouching and inactivity cause muscle fatigue, leading to poor posture. Due to this, millions of people suffer from the harmful effects of bad posture, which develops into significant problems over time. These complications of poor posture may occur due to the day-to-day impacts of gravity, injury, muscle guarding, muscle tension and weakness, mental attitude and stress, heredity, and genetics. Unfortunately, only a small percentage deal with the factors of their lives that cause the problem.
So, what is bad posture? Bad posture or postural dysfunction occurs due to unusual positioning of the spine, causing stress to the joints, muscles, and vertebrae. The extended poor positioning leads to the accumulation of pressure on these tissues. Painful conditions linked with bad posture include body aches, including upper or lower back pain, neck, shoulder, arm pain, spinal dysfunction, joint degeneration, and a potbelly.
Luckily, you can enhance your posture, strengthen your muscles and improve your spinal health by trying some simple yoga poses. Yoga is an incredible way of thwarting the negative effects of poor posture as the stretches help align the spine and the vertebrae. Some of these yoga poses include:
1. Bridge Pose
The bridge pose is a beginning backbend that stretches the neck, spine the thighs, and hip flexors. With this pose, your arms and legs form a locked bridge with your entire body. Bridge pose entails lying down on your back and palms pointing down at the sides. The knees are folded, bringing the heels closer to the buttocks. The tailbone is moved towards the pubic bone, raising the buttocks from the floor.
Bridge pose is the best activity for people with high blood pressure and asthma as it helps to calm the mind, opens the chest, and increases lung capacity. It also helps to revitalize the abdominal organs and thyroid glands which enhances digestion and controls metabolism. Since your heart is more elevated in this pose, it is considered less strenuous than other inversions.
However, it should not be practiced by people suffering from neck and shoulder injuries or any other medical complications. Also, people doing this yoga pose should avoid working beyond their limits and abilities.
2. Heart Bench
Heart bench, also known as supported fish pose, is a deep backbend that opens the muscles in your neck, chest, and abdomen. The heart bench pose enables you to adjust the strength of the bend and relax in the bend. You will require two yoga blocks set to form a “T” shape when practicing this pose.
One block should be positioned on the mid-back so as it can offer support to the shoulder blades. The other block should be placed below the head so that you can lay your head back and open the throat. Position your hips on the floor and ensure that the pelvis is in complete contact with the floor.
You can stretch your legs or fold your knees, join the soles of the feet and let your knees relax. At this point, enclose your shoulder blades around the block and position your arms on the sides with your palms facing upwards. Finally, let your entire body to relax by withdrawing your shoulders from your ears as you rest your hands palms by your sides.
The heart bench pose helps stretch the intercostal muscles between the ribs and fascia of the chest, shoulders, abdominals, and neck. It is also an incredible way of revitalizing belly and throat organs, enhancing postures, increasing metabolism, and curbing anxiety and depression.
3. Cobra Pose
Rounded shoulders is one of the most common causes of bad posture. The cobra pose helps to align the shoulders and the neck while also strengthening the entire back. While practicing this pose, straighten your toes, lie face down, position your forehead on the mat and elongate your neck.
Flex your elbows and shift your palms closer to your ribs, Propelling the upper parts of your feet into your mat. Raise your forehead, chest, palms, and kneecaps off the mat. Thrust the shoulder edges together, grasp some slow breaths, and exhale.
Cobra pose helps to subside stiffness of the lower back, enhances flexibility, boosts your mood, stretches muscles in the shoulders, chests, and abdominals, enhances menstrual irregularities, rejuvenates the heart and others.
4. Tadasana Pose
Tadasana is a simple yoga pose but the best in engaging the whole body. Although it is a foundational pose for all standing poses, it reflects the ideal standing posture to keep the body from unnecessary stress. When doing Tadasana pose, elevate all your toes, spread them out, and lower them back to form a comprehensive, solid base. Establish your feet and calves on the floor. Maintain your shoulders wide and relaxed. Keep your quadriceps occupied and raise them upward, elevating your kneecaps.
Whirl your thighs inward, forming a widening of the sit bones. Do not adjust the natural curves of your spine. Tone your belly and suck it in slightly. Position your head so the chin is neither tucked down nor lifted, and the crown rises to your pelvis.
Tadasana enhances your posture, makes your legs more powerful, develops good alignment, promotes mental awareness, improves breathing, boosts your mood, and may also help to increase your height.
5. Fish Pose (Matsyasana)
Fish pose is an excellent way to boost the body’s energy and combat fatigue. It is a fantastic pose before retiring to bed or after a long drive. When practicing the pose, you start by reclining your back on the floor. Flex your knees and raise your pelvis slightly above the floor.
Shift your hands below your buttocks with the palms siding down. Then repose your buttocks on the backs of your hands, ensuring you don’t move them from your hands as you proceed. Suck in and thrust your forearms and elbows powerfully against the ground while squeezing your scapulas into your back.
Raise your tops off the floor, curve your back and elevate your chest as much as possible. At this point, you can make your head relax by releasing it onto the floor. Your head should not strain at all. Finally, let the knees lie straight and maintain this pose for at least one minute.
Fish pose is an incredible way of stimulating the muscles of the belly and the front of the neck. It also helps to enhance posture and build up the upper back and back of the neck muscles. Fish pose is also perceived as a destroyer of many diseases.
6. Shoulder Pigeon Pose
The shoulder pigeon pose alleviates tightness in the chest, shoulders, and hips. When practicing this pose, you begin by resting your belly on the floor with your legs straight behind you. Let both arms lie straight out to your side and your palms face down so that your wrists are in line with your shoulders.
Position your right cheek on the mat. Thrust into your left palm and move onto your right shoulder. Curve your left knee and lower your left foot on the floor behind your right leg. Ensure your knee is facing upward and the hip and chest opening. Grasp your breaths and then reverse to your belly. Repeat on the other side.
Pigeon pose is a significant yoga pose to stretch your hips and lower back. If done appropriately, it may surge flexibility of the hip flexors and lower back muscles while also promoting digestion. It is also suitable for relieving mental stress and anxiety.
7. Cow Face Arms
Cow face arms, also known as Gomukhasana, helps to stretch the hips, ankles, shoulders, arms, and chest. Unlike other hip openers in yoga, which entails opening the legs wide apart, cow face arms is done while closing the legs and work perfectly in stretching the hips. This pose is the best in correcting your posture and enhancing flexibility. It is the best for people who sit in one spot for the whole as is helps to open the hips and chest, preventing the slump embraced by many people while sitting.
This pose can be practiced while seated on a chair or the floor. Bend your knees on your centerline, mounting the right knee above the left knee. Raise the right arm straight up toward the ceiling, slide your elbow and then stretch your right fingers down on your back. Enfold the left arm behind your back, and move your left fingers, shifting up towards the right fingers.
Bring the hands near each other, and as they come into contact, the right fingers hold on to the left. Draw both elbows towards the center and raise the chest. Breathe and allow the breath to last for at least five minutes and change sides, raising the left arm overhead and enfolding the right arm around and back.
8. Downward Facing Dog
This is a universal and fantastic pose because it is associated with numerous benefits. It is always incorporated in most yoga sequences. The downward-facing dog pose is an incredible way of strengthening the arms, core, shoulders while opening up the back, chest, and shoulders.
From the plank pose, elevate your hips and back. Let your knees relax and straighten them. Squeeze your hands consistently against the floor. Compress your shoulder blades against your back and let your head relax between the upper arms. Loosen your neck and face downwards. Maintain this for a minute.
Downward facing dog pose helps to stretch the lower body, build up the upper body, improve blood circulation, enhance body posture and perfect your foot muscles.
9. Hero Pose
Hero pose, also known as virasan, is a seated pose that offers an exceptional stretch to the quadriceps. It is a fantastic way of raising your shoulders above the hips, which helps position the spine combating pains that may occur as a result of sitting.
While practicing the pose, kneel on the floor with your knees lowered below your hips. Place your hands on your knees. Make the distance between your legs wider by bringing the knees close to each other. Squeeze the top of your feet vigorously on the floor. Gently, ache your hips so that you are sitting on the floor. Withdraw the calves with hips between your heels, spreading the toes outwards and back. Draw up your belly button and elongate your tailbone from the crown of your head to the floor.
Hero pose is a remarkable way of stretching the quads and ankles, thus enhancing flexibility in the knees, ankles, and thighs. It also improves spinal alignment, promoting breathing and preventing slouching.
10. Prone Leg Extensions
You can carry out this pose lying on your stomach. The sequence is performed by elevating the head while the legs, pelvis, and feet are in contact with the floor. Stretch your forearms ahead while the palms are pointing down to support the weight of the torso. This sequence helps to build up the lower back, glutes, hamstrings, and core.
11. Warrior Pose 11
This pose helps to boost stamina, strengthen the legs, opens the hips and chest. It is a remarkable way of alleviating backaches, stimulating abdominal organs, stretching groins, chest, lungs, and shoulders. It is also a perfect exercise for rectifying carpal tunnel syndrome, flat feet, infertility, osteoporosis, and sciatica.
12. Tree Pose
Tree pose, also known as Vrikshasan, is a fantastic yoga pose that helps to enhance stability in the legs. It works by building up the ligaments and the tendon of the feet. Tree pose is an excellent way of strengthening and toning the whole standing leg, all the way to the buttocks. It also poses some significant emotional benefits, such as enhancing self-confidence and esteem.
Practice Yoga Poses and Rectify Bad Posture
A bad posture is always a result of daily activities, and if not taken care of, it may cause significant medical complications. Therefore, it is imperative to practice yoga poses regularly as it helps to improve your posture and prevent chronic back pain. Also, even though you have no pains caused by bad posture, yoga practices are still beneficial, especially for people whose job demands them to stay in one posture for a long time.
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