I recently wrote a post based around my favorite exercises for better posture but the truth is, I wanted to bring you more, a lot more.
So, a while after I wrote that last post, here if you’re curious, I set out to bring you something far more in depth, far more detailed and well, far more all rounded.
I didn’t just want to show you some of my own personal favorite exercises but I wanted to show you some of the top recommended exercises to improve posture straight from the experts themselves.
Wouldn’t it be helpful if you had a complete list of exercises that you could perform at home, suggested to you straight from the experts?
Of course it would, so that’s what I did.
I scoured the internet for the following 4 types of experts:
- Physical Therapists
- Yoga Experts
- Pilates Experts
See there’s one thing these experts all have in common, they all know how to help you gain better posture.
Spread across the above 4 fields, I reached out to a ton of experts, asking the same question to each of them, here’s what I asked:
“If you were to recommend just one exercise to someone that could help them improve their posture what would you recommend?”
This was quite a difficult question to answer (as you’ll see shortly) because of the many postural deviations that there are but it’s for that reason that made it the perfect question.
I didn’t receive a single duplicate response and that allowed me to compile a wide variety of exercises that you can use to help improve your own posture, each suggested by an expert.
Before I get into the list though, keep reading to find out how these experts can actually help to improve posture.
Why These Experts Are Great at Helping You Improve Your Posture
As I said, each of these experts are able to help you gain better posture but the truth is, they each have their own very different methods and practices.
Yoga and Pilates are similar but believe it or not, these practices are indeed different. Here’s a few reasons why they differ courtesy of DoYouYoga:
- They have different origins – Yoga comes from south Asia and is thousands of years old, Pilates on the other hand was developed by Joseph Pilates and was first taught to others during World War I, making Pilates much more modern in comparison.
- Different class styles – While some Yoga types are more consistent, it can often be difficult knowing what to expect in a Yoga class whereas Pilates classes, day to day, are more consistent.
- What you’ll achieve – The aim with Pilates is to focus on the alignment of your spine and to increase core strength by performing short, targeted exercises in order to gain complete control over your bodies movements. Performing Yoga targets your whole body and after performing each pose, a counter pose is performed to work the opposite muscle group.
- How and when to breath – With Pilates it’s simple, just be aware of your breathing throughout, in through the nose and out of the mouth, easy. Performing Yoga, breathing becomes part of the routine, often enough classes will devote periods of the class to just breathing work.
- The spiritual experience – Yoga is very much about spirituality as it is your body, in fact a Corpse Pose is usually performed at the end of each class for a moment of meditation. With Pilates, it isn’t as much about spirituality but it is about being mindful of your body’s movements and movement patterns (Thanks Karen) and then changing them for something more natural as opposed to what has become the ‘norm’.
So that’s how those 2 compare, but what about how they can actually help you gain better posture?
How Pilates Can Help to Gain a Better Posture
According to this post from Medicine Net, when performing Pilates, the focus is on increasing flexibility, strength and on body awareness, whether this be through mat work or with resistance equipment.
This is done by performing a series of small and targeted exercises, of which there are over 500, meaning there are tons of exercises for better posture just from performing Pilates!
The key points when performing Pilates exercises is increasing core strength and the alignment of your spine.
It’s well known that having a strong core is absolutely key to maintaining correct posture so it goes without saying that performing Pilates exercises is great for better posture.
Again the goal is to be aware of your body’s movements and to have complete control over those body movements, doing this will enable you to achieve an all round better posture.
“The Pilates Method teaches you to be in control of your body and not at its mercy.” – Joseph Pilates.
Yoga and Posture?
According to Lexi Yoga, Yoga is a great way to stretch your body and release tension where needed, while also improving overall strength, flexibility and balance.
Yoga is also very good for increasing core strength and improving spine alignment, which are essential to having correct posture.
This FAQ from Yoga From The Heart state that the 6 fundamental types of Yoga postures are:
- standing poses
- forward bends
- back bends
Considering all of the variations, there are thousands of poses you can perform, making Yoga great for gaining better posture.
How Chiropractors Help Improve Posture
The guys over at Taylor Chiropractic say that chiropractic adjustments can definitely help to improve posture, such as improving a forward head or a tilted pelvis, caused by hours of hunching forwards perhaps.
Performed by a trained practitioner, chiropractic adjustments is where specific areas of the body’s joints are lightly manipulated.
Lying in a comfortable position a chiropractor will introduce movement to your immobile joints in the body which could be causing nerve problems.
Physio For Better Posture?
The thing with having bad posture is, if left untreated, it can severely impact your functional mobility.
Good thing that’s exactly what Physical Therapy is great at fixing!
Here’s what the guys over at Physiotherapy Kingston have to say on the matter:
“When it comes to posture and the movement mechanics of your body, no one is more qualified than a physical therapist to help you. In physical therapy we evaluate your body mechanics, posture, strength and mobility to evaluate what is needed for you to have better posture.” – Physiotherapy Kingston
So that’s how these 4 experts are able to help you gain a better posture, by now I’m sure you’re wondering, “OK so where are the exercises?”, believe me I hear you, so, here’s the list.
21 Expert Recommended Exercises For Better Posture
There is an awful lot to go through here, so to make it easier I’ve included the below quick links that can be used to jump straight to where you want to be, however, I still suggest you go through the entire list.
- Exercises For Head/Neck Alignment – You’re already here!
- Exercises For Upper Back and Shoulders
- Exercises For Spine Alignment (Core and Posterior Chain Exercises Included)
- Exercises For Lower Back and Pelvis
- General Exercises For The Whole Body
The first set of exercises to make the list are designed to help with issues such as forward head posture and neck pain. With leaning forwards at the neck becoming more common, perhaps from over use of computers, these exercises will help resolve these issues.
Suggestion 1 – Chin Tucks
To kick start the list of exercises, Doctor Jo from AskDoctorJo.com suggested to me this very simple exercise that you can use at any time of the day, whether you’re relaxing at home or out busy working and is definitely one of the easiest exercises for gaining a better posture.
Here’s what Doctor Jo has to say:
“Chin Tucks for Better Posture.
My favorite exercise for correcting posture is the chin tuck. It’s very easy to do, and it is also very effective.
We often sit in front of a computer or TV for hours out of the day, and our neck and upper back muscles become weak.
This makes us lean forward at our necks (forward head posture) causing stress on the muscles.
Strengthening these neck muscles will not only put you back into a proper position, but it will also help with any pain you are having from it.
For a demonstration of a chin tuck, watch the short video below.”
Suggestion 2 – Head Rest Press
While this exercise is essentially a Chin Tuck, it makes the list simply because of where it’s suggested you perform it.
If you spend long periods of time driving, or even just driving to and from work, you’ll find this suggestion as simple as they come. It was suggested to me by Jana Danielson of LeadPilates.com.
“For those of you who commute to work, try this: when you are at a red light, with your eyes on the horizon, press the back of your head into your headrest behind you, hold for 3 breaths the relax – rep 3-5 times.
This simple position of the head creates and eccentric, isometric contraction of the deep neck stabilizers that have been overused all day as we look at our computers – in essence it is a ‘postural stretch’.
Bringing the weight of the head back in space goes a long way to retraining the upper body posture.”
Suggestion 3 – Scalene Stretch
The next exercise on the list is an exercise that relieves tight scalene muscles, found at the front of your neck, and was suggested to me by Dr. Kevin Wafer from WestHoustonChiropractor.com.
Here’s what Kevin had to say:
“Today, everything we do is looking down, whether it be at our computer screens or our smart phones.
When this happens, the muscles in the front of our neck, our scalenes, become extremely tight and can lead to poor posture.
To stretch the scalenes, reach across your body and slightly pull down on your collar bone, then lean your neck back and to the opposite side. Perform this stretch on both sides, three times a day to improve your posture.”
Suggestion 4 – 5 More Simple Stretches
To finish up on the exercises that help your neck, the following video shows several exercises that are great for releasing tension in your neck and reducing neck pain in the process.
Releasing tension in tight and stiff muscles in and around your neck will allow your head to sit in it’s correct postural alignment.
The person behind the video is Dr Russell Brokstein from ChiropractorFreehold.com.
Suggested: Correcting Forward Head Posture
Upper back and shoulder mobility, often accompanied with pain, are becoming more of an issue due to the nature of today’s world, so these exercises will be of real benefit to you.
Suggestion 5 – Foam Roller Routine
While not a single exercise, this simple routine brought to us from Ben Shatto, a physical therapist and the owner of ThePhysicalTherapyAdvisor.com is excellent for helping you achieve better posture and doesn’t have to take any more than 4 minutes 10 seconds to get through the routine once.
Here’s what Ben suggests:
“Cervical (neck), thoracic (upper back), and shoulder pain is often caused from stiffness in the thorax.
We spend so much of our day sitting slouched or standing hunched over (in a forward flexed position for the thoracic spine) that we lose normal mobility. This stiffness in the thorax can cause compensation patterns in our cervical spine and shoulders. Over time, this can develop into painful areas.
The key to eliminating pain is to improve posture and improve the mobility of the thoracic spine, so the neck and shoulders no longer have to compensate for the lack of mobility.
The number one exercise to improve posture? I don’t have just one exercise, but a series of exercises that I recommend. These stretches are designed to counteract the stresses and postures of daily life and to restore the normal mobility to the upper back.
I prefer to use a foam roller, but you could utilize several rolled up towels as well or possibly a water noodle with or without towels rolled around it. The key is to have a fairly firm surface which you can lay on that will not impede shoulder mobility.
A variation of the foam roll stretches could also be to lie over a large Thera Ball, also known as a Swiss ball or exercise ball, and perform the same arm positions.
When performing these exercises, it’s important to understand that stretching should never be painful. You should feel a mild to moderate stretching sensation. If you start to experience numbness or tingling in the hands or arms, you should discontinue the stretch at that time.
When performed regularly, these simple exercises will help you to improve poor posture and can be performed anywhere.”
Suggestion 6 – Lower Trapezius Activator & Strengthener
The next exercise on the list, and one that targets the lower trapezius, was suggested to me by Katherine and Kimberly Corp from over at PilatesOnFifth.com. With several appearances on the show ‘Anderson Live’ you may well be familiar with twins Katherine and Kimberly, they have also been Radio City Rockettes.
This exercise will also help to improve shoulder posture and mobility by working their range of motion. Read on for the ladies suggestion:
“ONE exercise only is actually really tricky!
Many of the exercises that specifically target the postural muscles are done prone (lying on one’s tummy), but if the “doer” is not engaging his/her abs and core properly, then a prone exercise could put undo strain on the lower back… not good.
An exercise that we give to ALL of our clients (and ourselves actually), is one that one of our on-site PT’s gave us.
Describing it as best as I can, here is how to perform the exercise.
1 – Find a wall that has about 6 feet of clear space from hips up (more if you are taller)
2 – Place your back against the wall and walk your feet out, bending your knees as necessary, until your entire spine is flat against the wall. An image here is that you are being pressed into the wall from some imaginary force…. but do it with your abs pulling in like they will save your life! NOTE! Many/most people will need a cushion or rolled up towel placed vertically behind the head to keep the spine in alignment…. we do NOT want the cervical spine to extend in the attempt to get the head against the wall!
3 – From there, make the “ok” sign with with both hands (thumb and index fingers joined), and then place the OUTSIDE rim of the circle that is made (i.e., not the palm side) against the wall with the hands by the hips.
4 – Before doing anything, draw the abs in again and think of placing the scapulae in your back pockets.
5 – Slowly slide your arms up the wall in a “snow angels” pattern (think of lying in snow as a kid), checking regularly that the elbows do NOT bend. If they bend, lower the arms a tinge, straighten the elbows, and start the ascent again. Don’t forget that the outside edge of the “ok” circle needs to stay against the wall.
The lower traps will be SCREAMING, but at the same time the abs are working and the neck muscles are not (providing the cushion is used as directed).”
Suggestion 7 – Upper Back Routine
This next exercise actually has 3 levels or variations and is again targeting the upper back. It was suggested to me by the lovely Adele over at AdelesPilates.co.uk.
Adele is a level 3 Pilates instructor and has a real passion for fitness so was more than happy to share with us her suggestion, here’s what Adele had to say:
“Having worked in the Pilates industry for over 20 years and seen a lot of back problems I would focus my one exercise on upper back.
Maybe it is the age profile of customers that I see, over 40+ but I also come across a lot of kyphosis in late middle age and early teens.
I think most people are ‘getting the message’ about lower back problems and weak core.
I was approached by my kids Headmistress yesterday and she self diagnosed herself in a 5 minute conversation.
Her words – “I have a niggling back muscle strain …. I think it is a weak core”.
The message on lower back pain and bad posture is hitting on, thanks to great Blogs like yours Sean 🙂
However upper back issues seem to be largely ignored. For that reason I would suggest an upper back exercise.
Lying prone (face down) with arms at right angles to body and keep your head on a small towel to begin.
Level 1 – lifting just arms.
Level 2 – lifting arms and small head raise.
Level 3 – lifting arms and head and pull arms back to waist to work big back muscles.
I always offer 3 levels to each of my exercises, so everyone in the class is catered for plus you can start off the class firing the right muscles.”
Including exercises that help strengthen your posterior chain (the muscles on the back of your body), these are exercises that, if you suffer with poor back posture and back pain, will help you immensely.
Suggestion 8 – Downward Facing Dog
The next exercise on the list, the first of several Yoga poses, is a great exercise to help strengthen your upper body but is also great for your lower body too.
It was suggested to me by Hannah Faulkner of HalfMoonYogaAndArt.com, here’s what Hannah has to say:
“Adho Mukha Svanasana or Downward Facing Dog is my “go to” inversion and what I believe to be the most well-rounded yoga position for posture, strength, stretching, and resetting the nervous system.
This pose targets your upper and lower body at the same time – your spine stretches out long while loosening the tension in the back of your hamstrings and arches of your feet.
Your upper body (arms, hands, wrists, and shoulders) builds strength while your neck feels relief from holding up your head.
This position encourages added bonuses like blood flow throughout the entire body, boosting the immune system and circulating energy. It also changes our perspective of the world.
The added blood flow to the face, combined with intense focus, adds a youthful afterglow to our complexion as well as a calmer overall demeanor.”
Suggestion 9 – Cat Stretch
The next exercise to help you gain a better posture and sticking with exercises for the spine, was suggested to me by Suzanne Newby from the Pilates Fitness Institute.
This simple exercise helps to decompress the spine and is great at reversing the negative affects from hunching forwards, be sure to read this suggestion from Suzanne:
“This exercise is a safe position for all bodies to achieve good technique and is fairly easy.
It will help to decompress the spine and joints as well as provide good input for body awareness in assisting where your body is in space, which will, therefore, contribute to better intrinsic connections over just superficial connections (we are trying to get a balance of both!).
Most people are stuck in flexion based movements through out the day. Such as: looking down to eat, looking on our phones, driving, bending over to pick up toys etc.
The Cat Stretch in the quadruped position (all 4’s) can be challenging for your trunk muscles (we aren’t just talking the front of the body, all 4 sides of the body to promote Positive Muscle Recruitment patterns) and also promote good MRP as the only load you need to manage is your own body weight.
To perform the Cat Stretch, focus on pressing into the hands and lifting up and out from the armpits to stabilize the upper body, you will also focus on pressing the knees and shins down as you energize through the feet (particularly the heels) to stabilize the legs and pelvis.
With these two things in place the trunk (core!) will connect and the spine can therefore move effortlessly through the ranges of flexion and extension (extremely needed due to our flexion based movements) which is the Cat Stretch (breathe in to take the spine at both end into even flexion shapes and exhale to take the spine at both ends in even extension shapes and repeat) and this will energize and assist in correcting our posture.
Quadruped movements are lost in our western society very early on, but if you study small children they do it often and move with ease.
Introduce some type of quadruped movements into your daily schedule for great results.”
Suggestion 10 – Downward Facing Dog (Variation)
This Downward Facing Dog variation was suggested to me by Rachel Scott, a trainer of Yoga (to students AND teachers), and owner of RachelYoga.com.
Not everyone will find the standard Downward Dog easy to perform, this variation makes the exercise a lot easier by taking the strain off of your arms and shoulders, over to Rachel:
“My favorite pose – and one that I teach to all my private students – is a variation of downward facing dog.
Simply put, it’s “L-shape” at the wall, where you place your hands at the height of your hips at the wall and step your feet back so that your spine is parallel to the floor and your hips directly over your ankles.
While this pose is essentially downward dog, it takes pressure off the shoulders and the wrists so that you can focus on lengthening the spine.
- stretches and decompresses the spine – amazing stretch!
- opens the shoulders
- opens the hamstrings
Tips for the pose:
- place hands as wide as your shoulders on the wall
- straighten arms
- bend knees to create space in your hamstrings
- reach your chest to wall as you stretch your back and send your hips back
- keep your head in line with your upper arms.
- stay for ten deep juicy breaths
For an extra stretch? Keep your L-shape alignment as you stretch one leg out behind you.
Better yet, you can do this anywhere there is a wall! Take an office break and reset your body through this simple pose.”
Suggested: How to Fix Sway Back and Hunch Back
Here are those exercises that will help strengthen the muscles that make up your posterior chain, these muscles are imperative to maintaining a good posture.
Suggestion 11 – Superman Exercise
This is one popular exercise, which is totally understandable, because it’s awesome! If you haven’t seen or heard of this exercise then you need to read on.
This exercise was suggested to me by Dr. Philip Cordova, a Chiropractor from over at CoreChiropractic.net, and has to be one of the most well rounded exercises for better posture out there. This is what Dr. Cordova had to say:
“I’m a big fan of the “Superman” exercise.
This seems to provide the most bang for your buck since it makes you work just about every area that is being affected by sitting at a computer all day.
The key is to do it consistently and slowly for best results.
I usually recommend that patients start with just 10 reps (it’s much harder to do when you do it slowly) and build until they can comfortably do about 40 reps. See below the video we did about it.”
Suggestion 12 -The Dart
Next up on this list of exercises is an exercise, similar to the Superman, called The Dart and was suggested to me by the wonderful Karen Grinter from over at NorthantsPilates.com.
Again this a great all rounded exercise to help you gain better overall posture. Read on for what Karen had to say:
“Sean asked me if I could name one exercise that would help improve posture! EEEK!
That’s almost impossible because it depends on the person and what they have going on.
But given that so many of us are sitting for hours in front of keyboards/screens/steering wheels we are doing so much more work on the back of the body to try and bring balance to the spine.
So I would suggest an exercise called The Dart for the following reasons.
- It puts the spine and pelvis in a good neutral position, so starting to undo the chin poke posture you might have been in all day.
- It involves the pelvic floors, the abs, the bum and inner thighs to help assist the back muscles, they are grateful for the work. They don’t do much when sat on your bum!
- It works the spinal muscles against gravity..perfect.
- It includes the shoulder blades and anything that works that area will help the shoulder girdle sit in a much better place and open up the chest. Knock on effect here is the improved shoulder mobility when the bones are sitting where they should.
- It brings the neck into alignment, again great if you need to improve chin poke posture.
So it’ll tick a lot of boxes…improved back muscle tone, improved body awareness, a really good all round exercise.
You can add to it by moving your arms out to the side or adding a side bend. That will give you the extra stamina and endurance you need in your postural muscles.”
Suggestion 13 – Swimming Exercise
Swimming in general is a fantastic exercise and something I wish was accessible to everyone, but sadly it’s not, so what do you do?
Well, you use the Pilates method, it was suggested to me by Robin Long from TheBalancedLifeOnline.com, here is Robins suggestion:
“If I could only recommend one exercise to help improve posture it would be the “swimming” exercise created by Joseph Pilates.
The swimming exercise calls upon the entire posterior chain of the body (muscle groups that are often neglected yet imperative for proper posture).
Additionally the exercise engages the core, includes functional movement and requires concentration which helps to improve the mind-muscles connection and overall body awareness.”
Suggestion 14 – Founder Position
Strengthening the muscles surrounding your spine is a great way to help your spine maintain a proper alignment, thus in turn helping you to maintain a good posture.
The Founder movement/position was suggested to me by Chiropractor Daniel Gonzalez from FamilyHealthChiropractic.com, here’s what Daniel shared with me:
“Tough question because posture control muscles obviously vary from top to bottom. But if I had only 1 to recommend it would probably be the founder movement/position.
Poor posture is an indication of weakness in the spine and muscles surrounding the spine.
Most of the population has problems with the “posterior chain” or muscles that reside on the back side of the body. These muscles help keep us erect.
The founder is great because it activates the entire posterior chain and includes the overhead position (arms extended, straight out over the head). It also focuses on improving the “hinge movement” which is crucial for most functional movements in life.”
Now with the exercises for your spine, core and the muscles in your back complete, the next few exercises are great at helping your lower spine and pelvis, including stretching and strengthening those hard to reach hip flexors!
Suggestion 15 – Boat Pose
The Boat Pose was suggested to me by writer Stephanie Spence of One-With-Life.com, Stephanie has been practicing Yoga for around 40 years and is also a former publisher for an award winning wellness lifestyle magazine so is what you might call, well experienced.
This is what Stephanie had to say:
“One of my favorite poses because I disliked it for many years and strengthened my body enough to eventually love it.
I started practicing yoga 38 years ago because I had a “bad back”. You move from the middle of your body the most and if you are not strong in your abdominals (all of them, including the tricky obliques) then it can cause a host of problems, including back pain. I hate traditional sit ups and promise with all my heart that the things you hate you don’t have to do. Yoga creates strength and flexibility – you need both.
More than that, you need the bliss and long list of emotional, spiritual and physical benefits of the practice. You especially need Savasana (Corpse Pose). But back to Boat…
Navasana – Full Boat – is often presented as an abdominal strengthener but more importantly this pose strengthens the deep hip flexors that attach the inner thigh bones to the front of the spine.
The variation I am doing is a balancing pose. Once you can do a deep forward fold, try this. The scientific and academic yogis (and old school yogini’s like me) may not always agree with all the variations you see on social media but this is actually a “real” yoga pose. So many “variation” poses I see on social media are going to cause problems structurally in the long run. I recommend learning from an instructor in person so they can correct any alignment errors.
This pose makes me feel free, confident, sexy and alive in a way that continues to evolve as my practice does. Even now, after all these years, I’m still in awe of this wonderful gift that yoga has brought to my life. I continue to feel like every time I step on my mat it’s the first time.”
Suggestion 16- Bridge Pose
The Bridge Pose has to be one of my favorite exercises for better posture simply because of how easy, but effective, it is and was suggested by Melody Abella of AbellaYoga.com.
Melody doesn’t usually respond to requests like mine as she is super busy teaching Yoga full time but was actually more than happy to get involved, here’s Melody:
“To answer your question, the first pose that pops in my mind is bridge pose.
Not only is it good for the lower back (80% of Americans at some point get lower back pain) but it also focuses on getting the shoulders away from the ears.
Moving the shoulders away from the ears, lengthens and stretches muscles around the neck. Bridge also focuses on opening the chest – so many people are caved in due to technology overuse.”
Suggestion 17 – Kegels
You might be thinking to yourself, “Kegels, on a list of exercises for better posture?”, well actually, yes. See, having poor posture can affect your internal organs and so it makes sense to do whatever you can to look after them, so why not incorporate kegels into your posture routine?
They can be performed during exercises such as The Bridge Pose found above, so you don’t have to go out of your way, here’s what Kimberlee, a pelvic floor physical therapist from over at SullivanPhysicalTherapy.com, had to say:
“Many people do not realize their pelvic floor is the bottom of their core.
If you think about your core as a basket you would want the base to be just as strong as the sides.
Doing pelvic floor contractions or kegels helps hold the organs and supports the lumbosacral and abdominal musculature.”
Suggested: Fix Your Tilted Pelvis
The last few exercises to make the list do not target a specific area of your body but can be used for your whole body. These are great general exercises that you should include into your daily routine.
Suggestion 18 – Myofascial Release
Who knew how amazing using a foam roller could be for your posture? The next suggestion on the list is another utilizing the power of these tools.
Suggested to me by Jamie from Azulfit.com this has to be one of the easiest ‘self massage’ techniques out there, over to Jamie:
“For me it’s impossible to select just one posture that works for every person. Even in general terms, the body requires a full spectrum of movement directions.
However, in these modern times, anything that encourages extension is much needed, due to over use of flexion with our more sedentary lifestyles, car seating positions, couches, computers and now even more so with the iPad syndrome (Protracted necks and forward rotated shoulders.)
However, for anyone looking for a movement change, whether for pain management, or even high level performance, one simple and effective exercise I strongly believe everyone can benefit from is trigger point myofascial release. It is not only simple, but can be done on your own, without expensive therapist or trainer fees.
There are many techniques and exercises for this, but all work towards creating space to facilitate positive change within the body.
This means correcting posture, improving mobility, relieving pain, improving performance and repairing or growing muscle tissue.
When we consider how something as simple as improving posture can increase our efficiency for oxygen intake, thus reducing fatigue, improving sporting performance and reducing anxiety levels, as well as improve self esteem and alleviate symptoms of stress, this makes Myofascial Release my absolute top exercise.”
Suggestion 19 – Taut Towel Pulls
I absolutely love improvisation, Taut Towel Pulls is a great example of this, using towels for exercise is a genius idea and something that is (or should) be available to everyone, if not then improvise!
This exercise was suggested to me from the team over at PilatesIntoLife.com, here is their suggestion:
“For the best Exercise, as lovers of the Fletcher Towelwork developed by Ron Fletcher, we find that something as simple as “Taut Towel Pulls” is something that everyone can do and when taught through the scope of Fletcher Pilates principals and fundamentals can and will give the body a postural awakening.
The simplicity yet precision of the Fletcher Towelwork gives feedback to the body that enhances engagement of the whole body from top to bottom.
We find this to be a great progression of movement that all bodies can engage and that is why we think if there was one exercise for better posture, that would be the one.”
The final 2 exercises are best performed AFTER performing any other exercises you are using to improve your posture, why?
Because these exercises will help your body get used to being in a good alignment.
Suggestion 20 – Standing With Neutral Posture
Practicing standing in a neutral posture is an awesome way to help you become more aware of your bodies position and in turn will help you to correct any deviations in your body’s alignment.
This one was suggested to me by Priya Tew from PilatesWithPriya.co.uk.
“I would say just practicing standing in neutral posture is important.
With a plumb-line running from the ear, to shoulder, to hip, to ankle. Checking the shoulder blades are down in the back and the neck is long and straight.
With the hip bones aligned and the weight back in the heels more than the toes, feet in parallel.”
Suggestion 21 – Corpse Pose
The Corpse Pose is usually performed at the end of a Yoga class as a way to completely relax your body, both physically and mentally, after a session. It’s for the same reason this pose is the conclusion to this list of exercises for better posture.
It was suggested to me by Brigitte Kouba from GigiYogini.com, read on for her suggestion:
“I actually suggest the relaxation pose, Savasana!
Lying flat, with bolsters under the knees, or just reclined – but symmetrical – is a great way to get comfortable for an extended amount of time.
This is actually how I practice my meditation.
Rather than sitting, slouching, or getting uncomfortable, I like to lay down and do less so I can breathe more!”
There you have it, a massive 21 exercises to help you achieve better posture!
This post came out huge (over 6000 words huge!) so there is an awful lot to look through and try for yourself, remember, every single one of these exercises was suggested by an expert within their respective fields.
The exercises provided in this list, if worked through, will give your body a complete postural workout and since there are exercises targeting pretty much your entire body, I’m sure you’ll find at the very least one exercise that will suit your needs.
I encourage you to head back up this page and do me a favor, pick 4 – 7 of these exercises and perform them daily over the next couple of weeks and see for yourself if you have better posture.
Be sure to come back and let me know!
Did you find these exercises helpful in any way? Is there any on the list you already perform, if so which ones? Be sure to let me know in the comments below!