Discover realignment strategies that can help everything from your bones and joints to energy levels.
Practicing good posture can do wonders for how you feel. Proper alignment supports everything from bones to joints to muscles, and can even improve your breathing and energy levels. These tips to improve your posture can help you make it into a habit that’s good for your health:
- Learn proper sitting and standing posture
- Remind yourself with a note or alert
- Adjust your workstation
- Strengthen your core
- Take stretching breaks
Let’s dig into each of these tips to improve your posture.
Learn proper sitting and standing posture
The very first step to improving your posture, of course, is to learn how it’s done. Simply trying to stand or sit up “straighter” instead of slouching is a good start, but the core of posture is about maintaining the natural curves in your spine. The three curves to consider are at your neck, mid-back, and lower back. Whether you’re standing or sitting, try to maintain these curves and keep your head level (not tilted up or down). When you’re standing, your shoulders should be back, but relax them when sitting.
Remind yourself with a note or alert
In the beginning stages of developing any new habit, it’s natural to forget from time to time and slide back to your old behavior. Keep posture front and center in your mind by sticking a note somewhere you’ll see it often or adding a calendar reminder to your phone. There are even posture apps that will do it for you throughout the day!
Interested in using your smartphone to help initiate more healthy habits? Check out these free workout apps for seniors here.
Adjust your workstation
If you spend much of your time seated at a desk, focus on your workspace when considering this tip to improve your posture. Follow office ergonomics tips to adjust the height of your desk, chair, and computer. Your feet should be flat on the floor (or on a footrest), knees level with hips, and computer screen at eye level, so you aren’t peering down. Choose a chair that supports your spinal curve or use a lumbar cushion (or rolled-up towel) behind your lower back.
Strengthen your core
Good posture stems from two key muscle groups: the abdominals and lower back muscles, both of which comprise your “core.” Thus, strengthening your core makes it easier to maintain proper posture. A few times a week, ask your doctor about adding core-strengthening exercises like these to your routine. You might recognize a few classics like sit-ups and planks and learn a few new ones too.
Check out additional strength training tips for seniors that are good for your whole body.
Take stretching breaks
Keeping yourself active and flexible during the day is important, but it can feel like it’s easier said than done. If you work in an office or spend much of your time in a seated position, try to take five-minute yoga stretching breaks throughout the day. Simply getting up and walking around is a good break too (hit the stairs in your building for extra cardio). You have data on your side here; studies show that exercise improves mental performance.
These tips to improve your posture can also help you adopt a healthy habit that can help you feel your best. Interested in more healthy habits for seniors? Head to our blog for more on that, plus many other articles geared toward senior living and independence.