Standing Strong. Simple Postural Changes to Create a Strong Body and Increase Productivity All While Standing
Sitting is not the only thing you do all day- I hope. But sitting is the only position we have talked about so far on the Jōbu-Blog. With the introduction of standing desks into offices, we are finding a different kind of back, hip and neck pain. So now we MUST talk about how you can protect your body by standing strong too! Don’t worry these are simple adjustments, that can be completed in a few seconds, but will help you achieve that sustainable high productivity everyone wants.
To begin standing strong: you must always feel your tallest- so stand up, up, UP!
By that I mean: pretend someone is above you pulling one strand of hair from the crown of your head up to the ceiling.
Now, in true Jōbu -Style we are going to work from the ground up:
Take a look at your feet: all ten toes should be pointing forward.
Your heels should be under your sitz bones. Locate your sitz bones just like when you are sitting down and pull your legs under your pelvis. (Women tend to think their hips are actually wider than they really are.)
Your knees should be stretched, but not locked. By that I mean you should not feel any tension in the back of your knees or your quadriceps.
Place your hands on your abs just below your belly button. Contract your abs and add a kegel. DO NOT INTERPRETE THIS AS HOLDING YOUR BREATH. Instead think of your abs wrapping from your obliques (your sides) and pulling forward (towards your belly button)
Press the shoulders down away from your ears and shake your head “no”. There should be no tension in your head/neck/chest/shoulders.
Now, in one piece, shift your weight forward to your tones. BUT keep pressing your heels down to the ground. This is a SLIGHT lean, almost unnoticeable, but, I promise, it will have huge effects: this will take the tension off of you spine and shift it to your belly. You should be able to release any tension you were holding in your lower back.
I call this position the “Michael Jackson Lean”. This minor shift to your posture will help keep pressure off of your back and bring focus to your power center, your abdominal muscles. Follow these steps and you will be Standing Strong.
**BE AWARE: standing in a new way may cause body soreness. AND ALWAYS: consult your health professional before making changes and adjustments to your fitness lifestyle.**
For National Spinal Health Month:
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