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heartland chiropractic johnston

Small Changes, Big Results!

Let’s play a game!

Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Go on, stand up! Tuck your pelvis underneath you so that your glute muscles are contracting. Notice how you feel. Now, untuck that pelvis all the way back until your lower back can feel it. Then, find a happy medium. You shouldn’t notice your glutes or your back, just simply in the middle. Now, let’s take a big deep breath in. Sounds simple right? Make sure you are breathing and watching your stomach expand. If your breath comes from the chest, focus on bringing back to your belly. Take a big deep belly breath in and let it out. Now keep breathing this way while we add on.

Next, let’s go ahead and bring your arms out to the side like you’re trying to make a “T”. Now bring them up a little bit more so that it looks like you’re making a “Y”. One more time, now bring them straight up like you’re making a lowercase “l”. Perfect, now making a windshield wiper motion bring your arms back down to your sides. Your shoulders should be drawn back and your shoulder bone should feel like you’re tucking them into your back pocket. Now, tuck your chin all the way to your chest. Feel the muscles in your neck stretch, and go ahead and bring it all the way back. Bring your right ear to your right side, and do the same on the other side. Lastly, jut your chin so that it’s sticking out (you could call this the chicken peck!), then bring it back so that we can see your best double chin. Notice how your muscles feel with each direction and then find the neutral position.

And you’re all done! Notice how you feel. Can you get more breath in your lungs? Do you feel more confident? Relaxed? Did you know this is actually how our bodies were designed to function? Proper posture is not just something our parents used to harp on for the fun of it. Noticing your posture and correcting it can actually lead to not only being physically comfortable but it can make a positive impact on your body as well. Let’s take a look at why it’s so important to work on this, and don’t forget to keep that posture we just found as we go!

  • Reduced low back pain and headaches
    • While pain in the low back region and/or headaches can result from multiple different things, sometimes it can be a result of strain or tension in places that shouldn’t be strained or tense. When we sit in uncomfortable positions all day or don’t move our bodies enough, our bodies start to adapt to the conditions we put it in, and while it may adapt to the circumstances to make the best out of the situation, this may affect us negatively long term. Making a slight change to your posture could make substantial improvements in how the weight is being distributed across the joints of the body and in turn, take away some of that pain/tenderness.
  • Improved mood
    • Have you ever pretended to be a superhero? Well, you should! Not only is putting on a costume fun for Halloween but have you ever noticed a superhero stance? It’s the exact position we worked on a little bit earlier (check-in, how’s that posture still doing?), the only difference? Put both of your hands into fists and place them on your hips. This is the stance of someone who is confident, someone who is about to take on the world, and someone who is going to make a difference. We all have the ability to not only make this stance every single day, but we have the ability to be superheroes in our own neighborhoods.
  • Slimming properties
    • Now, don’t get me wrong, I know there is no quick fix to weight loss, however when you have proper posture you are actually activating your core muscles substantially. This means that while you may not be at the gym doing abs all day, you are actually working the intrinsic muscles of your abdomen and back and the more we sit or stand in proper posture all day, the stronger it will make our core over time. Not only will you appear slimmer in minutes (if that’s your goal), you will also be working on your muscles and improving your strength and endurance as the day goes on.

As you were reading this, you may have noticed that your posture either reverted back to its regular position, and if it didn’t you may be feeling a little bit sore and uncomfortable. That’s okay, that is totally normal! It took years of poor posture to get your body in the position that it’s in and while it can’t just snap back into its correct position, a visit to your local chiropractor can actually help you improve your posture a lot faster.

When you visit your chiropractor, they will often do a posture analysis. Meaning they will locate the areas you may be placing more stress upon. After an examination, they will be able to address the issues you may be having not only in your posture but in your overall health. When they are ready to give treatment they will perform an adjustment. The reason for an adjustment is to produce movement in the area of the body, most commonly the spine, where it may be stuck. Bringing movement to these areas can help your body adapt to its proper position a lot faster and a lot safer than trying to force it back into place on your own.

When it comes to improving your health it is almost always the small changes that lead to big results. Let’s get out there and stand confident knowing we are improving our bodies one superhero pose at a time.