Healthy Posture

A healthy posture is a fundamental aspect of natural physical health and vitality. It primarily consists of standing, sitting, and walking correctly so as to gently, but constantly exercise the key muscular groups without performing any formal exercises.

First of all we will pay some attention to clothes and shoes. These should not restrict nor support the body. Checkley writes:

"Let the clothes fit and protect the body, and not allow the body to seek the favor of the clothes...Small and ill-fitting shoes have done as much damage in the world as corsets...Have shoes large enough to give your feet abundant freedom."

Standing Posture: To stand with a healthy posture, place your feet a few inches apart, arms hanging at the sides. Now make yourself as tall as you can, without straining. Reach up with your head (but don't stretch your head like a rooster). Do this and you will feel your chest lift, while your shoulders, hips and feet will fall into proper alignment. If you hold your shoulders too far back it will prevent you from reaching your full height. So it will also, if you hold your hips too far back, or attempt to protrude your chest unduly.

Stand that way for awhile and you will find that unconsciously your weight has shifted to the balls of your feet, the heels are resting lightly on the ground, your upper chest wall is moving with unwonted flexibility and there is a slight tensing of the muscles along the lower part of the spine. When you have the right position it will exhilarate you.

Now, relax into your former position and you will immediately realize that like most people you have been habitually supporting yourself on your bones, rather than with your muscles. This is the constant, subtle exercising of a correct posture which will tone and strengthen your whole body.

Sitting Posture: A healthy posture when sitting should be done much like standing (back straight and abdomen drawn in), the muscles must be brought into play and precisely in proportion to the extent in which they are used will be the absence of fatigue in sitting.

It is not necessary that a person should continually sit bolt upright. This would be very tiring for someone who has to sit for many hours during the day. Some of the muscles may be relaxed and the position modified for short periods, but the muscles should never be so relaxed as to drop the trunk upon the spine, leaving its own bone structure to hold it up. This is what typically gives people lower back pain. A proper maintenance of the muscular activity will keep up the healthy circulation and make it easier to sit for a considerable time without fatigue.

Walking Posture: For our walking protocol we would refer you to our separate article entitled:

Healthy Walking

Jump from Healthy Posture to The Exercise Protocol

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