If Your Resolution is Better Posture
Living Well...together, while apart
Let’s start by exploring what I mean by: “better posture”.
This is not a one size fits all proposition. There is no “perfect posture” that we can take snapshot of and then try to mold, twist, torque into to get an optimal result.
Each of you has a unique body. With different skeletal and muscle compositions. Different work, exercise, and leisure routines that push and pull on your framework and result in different static and moving postures. We all are working from a different starting point.
One key element to “good posture” is having options. Being strong and stable in a number of different positions. An ability to adopt various postures with strength, safety, and comfort throughout the day such that your skeleton and muscles remain adaptable.
All that to say I can’t pretend to know what is “better posture” for YOU. I am though aware a few typical patterns of tension. Common static postures that may not be favourable to hold over the long term.
- Because they impede our ability to breath effectively
- Encourage our bodies to hold more stress than necessary
- Place undue pressure or strain on the low back and neck
- Increase tension through the shoulders and decrease strength through the upper and mid back
- Increase tension through the hip flexors and consequently impede our ability to generate power and strength from your glutes
- Facilitate gravitational pull with a negative bias. That is encourage a forward bending and rounding of the spine that will in turn result in our skeletons adapting to that compressed shape.
Maybe one definition of a “better posture” is one that allows us to withstand or mitigate the stressors of work, recreation, and aging so that we are stronger, more able, and more comfortable as we age…?
In any case, if any of the challenges above describe you to some extent, then maybe I can help you adopt a “better posture” for you.
If you’re a practical individual, you might want to jump right to today’s Trainer Moves where – using some simple bands – we’ll take you through a workout that helps open the tight areas, strengthen the under active areas, and start to shift your muscles and skeleton towards a “better posture”.
The trick is to create both mobility and stability concurrently. That is to open up the tight area in order to encourage the muscles and bones to which they attach to sit in a more optimal position. And then to either at the same time or immediately afterwards call on the muscles that are responsible for maintaining that new, “better” position to fire. Create new muscle stimulation, awareness, and strength.
Let me take you through one written example:
Shoulders that sit in an anterior and elevated position (forward and high)
Tight anterior shoulders, tight pectoral muscles. Stretched and weak muscles through the upper back. Strain through the neck and likely lower back as well. Difficulty breathing.
The front of the shoulder. Use a lacrosse ball or other mobility/stretching techniques to open up the chest and shoulders.
Either concurrently (see above) or immediately after the mobility exercise.
Actively retract and depress the shoulder blades. Encourage the head to sit on top of the spine, centered over the shoulder girdle instead of craning forward. Activate the muscles through the posterior shoulder, through the mid back, and around the thoracic and cervical spine to create new movement patterns and strength that will encourage the shoulders to sit back a little further, the top of the sternum and chest to remain a little more open, and the neck to sit nicely balanced in direct opposition to the earth’s natural gravitational pull.
Now let me show two simple mobility/stability exercise that you can try:
“It’s not the load that breaks you. It’s how you carry it.” - Lou Holtz
Today’s Live Workout
Happy Monday! Robert S is stepping in for Penny today! So, come and join us to brighten your lunchtime!
TOTAL BODY CONDITIONING WITH ROBERT
Join Robert S today for a Total Body Conditioning workout! Challenge your cardio and strengthen your muscles from head to toe with this incredibly effective no-nonsense bodyweight training.
No equipment needed today.
Join Robert at 12:00pm (30 minutes) from your own living room.
Click here to join the workout.
Meeting ID: 864 5295 2847
THIS WEEK'S SCHEDULE
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If you have questions about our virtual live workouts, please reach out to Lauren.
Today's Trainer Moves
You all know that Meg is a huge believer that everything counts. Any movement you can get is positive. But, when it comes to training your back, there are some areas through the back chain that are more difficult to get at with regular bodyweight exercises.
However, by simply adding a few therabands to your home gym, you can get in a phenomenal full body workout that really addresses strengthening through your back. Join Meg now to learn more!
For questions about today’s Trainer Moves, you can connect directly with Meg here.
MEDITERRANEAN QUINOA SALAD
Time to turn to your lunch options. This Mediterranean quinoa salad with tomato, cucumber, feta cheese, and olives is packed with protein, fibre, and SO MUCH flavour! Bonus: you can meal prep this and keep it in the fridge for lunch a few days throughout the week!
- 1 cup white or tri-colour quinoa dry
- 1 medium tomato, chopped
- 1/2 long English cucumber, chopped
- 1 large bell pepper, chopped
- 2 large avocado, chopped
- 1/4 cup red onion, minced
- 1/2 cup parsley or cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 20 Kalamata olives, pitted
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Juice from 1 lemon or lime
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- Cook quinoa as per package instructions.
- In a large salad bowl, add tomato, cucumber, bell pepper, avocado, onion, cilantro, feta cheese, olives, lime/lemon juice, oil, cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Fluff quinoa with a fork and add to the bowl. Stir gently to combine and serve cold or warm.
- Storing: the beauty of this salad is that it tastes better with each day. As grains soak up the olive oil, cumin, and lemon/lime juices, salad gains more and more flavour. It’s good for up to 3 days refrigerated.
Do you have a “Something of the Day” you’d like us to share?! Email Meg.