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5 Best Ways to Improve Your Posture – Ask Doctor Jo

Hey everybody it’s Doctor Jo, and today I’m gonna show you the top five ways to improve posture. so let’s get started. So the first thing is one of my favorites, which is a chin tuck. for chin tucks, it’s not tucking your chin down this way, but it’s tucking your chin back in this way. what that does is that works all these neck muscles for when you have that bad posture and your head’s going forward and your shoulders start curling forward. so a chin tuck just kind of helps reset those muscles. it looks kind of weird it looks silly, but it’s really beneficial. so if someone’s making fun of you, make them do it with you and then you’ll both have better posture. so what you want to do is keep your head in a neutral position. so try not to have it down try not and look up, just straight forward, and what you want to do is take that chin and push it back. so it’s almost like if my hands were here, I’m trying to take my head into my hands.

I like putting my finger on my chin because it just gives me a little bit of visual to see that I’m actually moving my chin back. so usually I’ll just prop it here go back, you want to hold it for about three to five seconds. you see sometimes you have lots of little chins when you’re doing this, and then when you relax, I know my finger moved a little bit too, but then you should have a little bit of a gap because that means that those muscles are correcting. so depending on how big the gap is, that means you might need to do a little bit more or if you’re just here and it’s like that then you’re probably in pretty good position. so again holding it for three to five seconds and doing that about five times, and so that just again kind of resets all those postural muscles around your neck and then after you hold that then relax.

After you do that then you’re going to do some shoulder squeezes or scapular squeezes, and again what this does is it takes that thoracic and that neck area, the upper back and the neck, and just kind of starts working those muscles back there to help keep those shoulders up and back and not rolling forward because especially if you work at a computer a lot throughout the day, or you’re focusing on something you tend to kind of roll forward and hunch forward, so scapular squeezes are really easy to do. you don’t even have to get up or move or stand or anything like that. to do it you can just do it in your chair take five minute break and then do these stretches and exercises.

So I’m just going to turn a little bit so you can see what I’m doing. the goal is to squeeze those shoulder blades together. imagine that somebody’s hand is right on your spine, and you’re trying to squeeze their hand, but when you squeeze don’t squeeze up, squeeze down .you can use your elbows just to kind of help give you a target and squeeze back this way.

So again I’m not squeezing up I’m squeezing down and back. so again just holding that for about three seconds, really just get that stretch and then do that five to ten times. just to kind of reset those muscles make those muscles start working a little bit to get them back in that proper position. so the next way to help is using a posture correction brace or back support, and the folks at fourth and one sent me this really cool really simple brace to kind of help you get that good posture.

And so it’s great to use if you have a lot of fatigue or if you’re trying to correct that posture and get your body back used to it, but this is not something you should use long term. this is something you should use as a tool to help get you that better posture. so I kind of like putting it on like you would put on a backpack or even a jacket. so you just kind of spin it around, come up like that. so you want to start with it nice and loose so you can get it on pretty easily, and you want it just to go kind of right around the armpit area, if your skin starts getting sore like rubbing too much or it starts getting painful there, that means it’s too tight. so what you want to do is just once you get it on, take these pull it down to see how it tightens up and then just bring these up here? so if you can see I already am bringing my shoulders back a little bit more, and so it has that where is just getting that posture a little bit nicer.

I can’t roll my shoulders forward. I’m trying and they’re not going, so this is a really great way to kind of teach your body to get in that correct posture again, or if your upper back and your neck muscles are really fatigued, you can put this on to help that fatigue for a while. so these are great using as a tool but not using as long-term, just to kind of help you get that posture back to where you want it to, and so again it’s really nice because you can adjust it so it’s really adjustable and since the straps are nice and thick it doesn’t cut into your skin.

So I really like that as well and again don’t crank on it. if you’ve got really bad posture, you might want to start off with a little bit and then progress yourself with more each time so it’s a again a great way to help prevent those shoulders from rolling forward. so if you’re interested in purchasing the fourth in one correction brace, which they have blue as well as black, make sure and click on the link up here. so the next way to improve your posture is kind of a step up from the scapular squeezes or the shoulder squeezes and so this is going to be a row. so this time you want to use a resistive band. the resistive bands are great because then it gives you a little more resistance than just using your muscles, and it helps make them stronger too because you really want to work those muscles in the back to get them stronger to help keep you in that good posture.

The red is one step up, yellow’s usually the lightest in the thera-band series, but make sure you just know what bands you’re using because different brands have different colors. so wrap the band around your feet just to kind of anchor it. and with the rows, you want your thumbs to be up and you want your elbows to be pretty close to your side. so you’re not bowing them out like this, you’re keeping them nice and tight in and then you’re just going to do that shoulder squeeze or that scapular squeeze again. so imagining that somebody’s hand is on your spine and you’re just coming back and squeezing and then nice and slow coming back. so the key with the resistive bands is to go nice and slow and controlled. so you’re not going fast and using momentum, you’re really controlling it so you really get those muscles activating and working.

So just coming back nice big squeeze and then coming forward. so again with any kind of exercise I would just start off with about 10 or 15 doing one or two sets. if those become easy you get up to 20-25 then you can do a higher band. so the last way to help improve your posture is to stretch out those chest muscles or those PEC muscles because again, if you’re rolling those shoulders forward, what happens is those muscles here in your chest area get tight and then you have a hard time bringing them back because those muscles are just constantly pulling those shoulders forward and rolling them forward.

So a great way just at your chair to stretch is to take your hands and clasp them behind your back. you can do this standing up you can stretch it a whole bunch of different ways, but if you really don’t have time to get up and do stuff, this is pretty a pretty easy way to do it. so having your hands behind your back and what you want to do is you want to push down and out and at the same time just push your chest out.

So you’re doing that motion. and it helps if the chair has some a little hole in the back, but if it doesn’t you can just slide forward on your chair and do the same thing, but again this is a stretch so you want to hold this stretch for about thirty seconds, relax, and do that a total of three times. so nice big push back and then holding that stretch. so those were your top five ways to improve posture. if you’re interested in purchasing the fourth and one posture correction brace, make sure you click on the link up here, and don’t forget to subscribe by clicking down here. and remember be safe (have that good posture), have fun, and I hope you feel better soon.

As found on Youtube

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