These Pilates moves can help un-slouch your back and improve your posture to alleviate chronic pain.
Are you slouching? Caught you! Just think: How many times a day do you look down to check your phone? Use your computer? Drive your car? So many of us get into a bad habit of slouching throughout these everyday tasks, and then before you know it we have hunched shoulders and horrible posture that triggers regular back and neck pain.
This little Pilates workout is going to help you get in touch with your core so you can stand and sit up tall to fix your posture! Try to perform the whole series three or four times a week, performing each exercise 8-10 times.
Kneeling Spine Twist
- Kneel as tall as you can with your knees lined up directly under your hips. Lift your arms out to a T position, keeping your shoulders down and your core pulled in.
- Twist to one side, engaging your core to stay tall and keep your pelvis stable. Without lifting your shoulders, pulse three times to this side, then come back to center.
- Repeat on the other side.
- Lie down on your back and lace your hands behind your head. Feel free to bend your knees to take pressure off your lower back.
- Without pulling on your neck, release your elbows to the floor at your sides. Making sure your shoulders are loose (not up by your ears), try to press those elbows into the floor. Avoid straining your face and neck.
- Lying on your stomach, carefully bend your knees and reach your hands for your ankles. If both legs are too much, start by doing this exercise with one (then repeat with the other).
- Kicking into your hands, lift your chest off the floor to open your shoulders and chest. If this is enough of a stretch, hold here. Or you can add a slight rocking motion forward and backward, keeping the chest and shoulders open the whole time.
- From kneeling or standing, reach your arms down long by your sides with palms facing behind you.
- Push your arms behind you, opening the chest. Look over one shoulder, back to center, over the other shoulder, and then return to center with arms at your sides. Repeat this movement, looking over the opposite shoulder first this time. When turning your head, you should feel the stretch from your ear all the way down your neck and through your collarbone.
First published: 16 Nov 2017