After 4 months of Sheltering in Place with my 2 and sometimes 3 children and visits with my elderly parents, I’ve witnessed slouching more than ever before. I’m constantly walking by and running my finger up their spine or poking them between the shoulder blades saying “sit up tall” telling them the ramifications of hunching. I can still hear my father’s words in my head “pull your shoulders back”. He didn’t give a hella beans about proper body mechanics, only how I appeared in public.
Sorry “kids”, mind you they’re 29, 31, 33 and 35. So here I am doing the same thing my Dad did to me only for a different reason. Besides, it’s payback time so I get to return the favor to my parents as well..hee hee. Actually, I know too much being in the field of health and wellness all of my life and seeing the ramifications of “being a slouch”.
My mother wanted me to run for Miss Daly City in 1974 which I wasn’t too keen on but went along with just the same. Heck, I could win 1,000 dollars to McDonald’s department store and what 17 year old girl doesn’t like to shop?!!
Where in the hell is Daly City you ask and who cares? Sorry if I’m offending anyone that lives there and loves it. My 94 year old Father in Law still does.
Sorry, Dad. Actually he too choose the sun and is renting his out for a pretty penny.
“Top of the hill Daly City” as the saying goes is about 20 min south of San Francisco in California; The fog bank fo the world. We used to go to Searsville Lake during the summer and swim.
(Click link for fun facts) https://news.stanford.edu/searsville/faqs.html
I remember driving through Millbrae which was the first time I saw sun. I kid you not. My husband, who I met in high school can attest to that. Our goal in life was to live at least that far south of Daly City. Thankfully, we are now 40 minutes south of there.
Millbrae and Burlingame were only 15 minutes from Daly City. As a side note, there was a song made about Daly City written by Malvina Reynolds in 1962 called Little Boxes on the Hillside. She got her inspiration when driving through the town one day. The lyrics just about sums up good ole Daly City; Little boxes on the hillside, Little boxes on the hillside and they’re all made out of ticky tacky and they all look just the same. It became a hit for her friend Pete Seeger in 1963 when he released his cover album.
Hearing the song for yourself will give you a much better idea of what I’m talking about and makes me laugh everytime I sing it. https://www.songfacts.com/facts/malvina-reynolds/little-boxes
That was our neighborhood until I moved out to go to college after I took the title of Miss Daly City. Who hoo…. LOL! That was enough for me and I quickly abandoned that train.
I’ll never forget the dreaded bathing suit competition and wearing the highest pair of heels I could walk in and standing as tall as I could with one knee bent in front when I stood in front of the judges, to appear slimmer than I was. With short thick legs my mother taught me this trick early on. Good Posture did however get ingrained in me which I value now more than ever as I’m getting older and gravity takes it’s toll.
I’m sure many of you have been experiencing less than optimal posture during COVID-19. Most of us are sitting more than usual at the computer, working from the bed or sofa, watching more T.V., and exercising hand to mouth activity as we watch our expanding waistlines right before our eyes. Most of us are noticing more slouching as well. I’m a stickler for correct posture as my family and clients will attest to since I’m always on their case.
I take great pride in my posture being good so you can imagine how shocked I was when just a few days ago, one of my daughters asked me why I was waddling. She proceeded to tell me I looked like an old lady when I walked lately and I was in good shape and this was not alright.
Out of the mouth of babes.
I was aghast and that was the wake up call I needed to head the call. So I’m now practicing my beauty pageant walking with a book on my head pulling in my abs and standing erect. I guess that title came in handy after all.
I did a body assessment of what was creating it and I noticed my hip bothered me when I tried to walk properly. So the improper posture was a compensation my body was making to protect me.
About 15 years ago, I had severe pain in my hip from running and walking so many miles and when I cut my mileage down, the pain dissipated. I was able to compensate by changing my gate unconsciously of course to make up for the imbalance but I can’t get away with this anymore. Clients and friends often say “are you limping” and I shrug it off. Hell, if I’m not in pain pain, I just ignored it and I thought they were just jealous of my good posture. Ha ha!
In evaluating my body mechanics I could see one leg was shorter than the other which is most likely what’s throwing my hip and knee off. And then I looked down and saw the dreaded bunion that I inherited from my grandmother that was passed down to my mom and my aunts
(thanks mom) .. always the mothers fault right?!! lol.
So, that puts strain on my gate as well. Plus, even though I’m in good shape, I’m aging and it takes a lot more mindfulness every time I move to lift through my abdominals, pull my shoulder blades together and open my chest. Let’s face it gravity works in one direction. 🤨
I’ll let you know how the lift in my right shoe does to help my posture. Sometimes it can be as easy of a fix as that, fingers crossed.
If you need a WHY to get your shoulders back keep reading.
Posture is Vital Physically, Emotionally and Spiritually
Your body is like a building starting from the base of you feet up. Imagine if the foundation of a building wasn’t solid, eventually that building would not sustain itself optimally with the risk of issues or falling down. Look at good ole Daly City: Actually they’re still standing so that’s a plus.
The same is true of our bodies. If we continue to slouch we will eventually have a whole mirage of issues in our bodies, so stand tall and feel the shift in your body, attitude and spirit.
BENIFITS OF CORRECT POSTURE
- Less Neck and shoulder pain:
When we hunch our shoulders forward we shorten our chest muscles (pectoral) shortening them and lengthening our back muscles creating tension and pain.
- Reduced Headaches:
Blood can flow optimally through the neck to the head and not impinge the neck muscles (occiput). Forward head creates a lot of tension and overworks the muscles as our head weighs between 7-12 lbs
- Less back pain:
Our hips can either thrust forward or backwards creating compression on our hips, shorten our psoas (a muscle that wraps around our hip and through connecting to our lower lumbar vertebrae creating pain.
- Less wear and tear and deteriorating of your joints:
If you constantly are putting more pressure on one part of your body you will throw everything else out of wack and wear out your joints, cartilage, stress ligaments and tendons and impinge disks and facet joints thus create pain.
- LESS TMJ:
(Temporal Mandibular Joint pain) can be released by keeping your head in alignment with your spine so your jaw (mandible) can let go.
- Better Digestion:
When you are uplifted through your spine, your organs aren’t compressed and can move freely.
- More lung capacity:
There is more space created in your diaphram when your sit upright allowing the lungs to expand and get more oxygen.
- Higher Self Confidence:
Because you are open and receptive and studies people respond to people with upright posture which helps your self esteem. Things flow better as well.
- Boost in Seratonin:
When blood flow is flowing freely the centers of your brain get a natural boost we are all looking for.
- Chakra Balancing creating connection:
There are 7 main Chakra Centers in the body from the top of our head down to our pelvis and when these are open and aligned in these energy centers we can access universal wisdom and can access optimum peace a joy.
EXERCISES TO HELP YOUR POSTURE
- Stand with shoulders, hips and knees in alignment with soft knees first of all.
- Shoulder blade Retraction
- Head Retraction
-Bridges To Srengthen Lower Back
Great Exercises and Stretches for Good Core
I do love healthline and these great helpful hints and exercises below
So, don’t be a slouch, listen to your children and stand tall being proud of who you are and who you are becoming.
Please let me know how you do with these reminders or perhaps new insights.
If you liked this please let me know, share with others or leave a reply.
It is greatly appreciated.
Thanks for taking time to visit me.
Blessings for an upright bright day,