Do you have aches and pains all over your body? Your posture might be the reason.
What is the correct posture? Ideally you want the skeletal structure to aligned vertically, so that when you are standing, your ears, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles will come in one vertical line. This will give the maximum support to the whole body, not putting any unnecessary pressure on the muscles. When the body comes away from that vertical line, either the adjacent supporting muscles will have to hold it from falling (because of gravity) and will be constantly in strain, or the rest of the body will compensate by pulling in the opposite direction (if the head is forward the hips will move back to balance the body, but gravity will still work downwards putting pressure on the spine and knees.) This can and will create achy joints and or muscles.
Some of the effects of the poor postures are lower back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, inefficient breathing, change in spine curvature (the spine is designed to absorb shock, if its normal structure changes then it might not work effectively).
Check to see which image is most similar to the way you stand.
We have compiled a 10 minute sequence designed to help correct your posture and help you to keep your spine healthy. This is can also be used for people with good posture, to help support the back and prevent future injury.
Try to do it in the given order.
1. Bhujangasana/ Cobra Posture:- It stretches the spine, opens the chest and the shoulders, strengthens the diaphragm. Hold the posture for 30 seconds with normal breathing. For more details about the posture check this link.
2. Tiryak Bhujangasana:- Stretches the spine and the lower back muscles, opens the chest and shoulders, strengthens the diaphragm. Repeat on both sides for 30 seconds with normal breathing. For more details about the posture check this link.
3. Makarasana/ Crocodile Posture :- This posture encourages the vertebral column to assume its normal shape and release the compression of the nerves. Stay in variation 1 for about 30 seconds. In the variation 2 you have to lift your legs up alternately trying to kick the hips with the heels, repeat for 30 seconds breathing normally. For more details on the posture check this link.
4. Ustrasana/ Camel Posture:- Opens the chest and the shoulders increasing the lung capacity. Particularly good at correcting rounded back and drooping shoulders. For more details on the posture check this link. Precaution:- You might feel light headed after doing this posture, relax immediately in Shashankasana if it happens, also do not rush in and out of the posture, do it slowly with deep breathing.
5. Shashankasana/ Hear Posture:- Used to relax the body and calms the mind. It counteracts the backward bending postures, and will stretch the spine releasing any pressure on the disc. For more details on the posture check this link.
6. Gomukhasana/ Cow Face Posture:- It removes the stiffness from the neck, back and the shoulders, stretching the hips. If you are not able to reach your hands at the back then you can use a strap and hold the strap with the hands at the back as close as possible. Stay in the posture for 30 seconds breathing normally. Repeat on the other side.
7. Kumbhakasana/ Dolphin Plank Posture:- This asana strengthens the arms, shoulders, abdominals and specially the lower back. Try to stay in the posture for about 30 seconds breathing normally. For more details on the posture check this link.
8. Marichyasana C:- Particularly good for people with rounded shoulders, this asana opens the chest, and stretches your spine. The intercoastal muscles are also stretched helping you to breathe deeply. Stay in the posture for 30 seconds breathing deeply. Repeat on the other side. For more details on the posture check this link.
9. Supta Padangustasana/ Reclining hand to big toe pose:- This posture is one of the best for lengthening hamstrings, and opening the hip without putting pressure on the lower back. It creates a traction in the spine, lengthening it, and relieving plain. Start by using the help of a strap, until you feel comfortable holing your toe. Stay in the posture for about 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side. For more details about the posture check this link.
10 . Parivrtta Suata Padangustasana/ Revolved Reclining hand to big toe pose:- This posture lengthens the hamstrings and stretches the lower back. You can use a strap around the foot if necessary. Stay in the posture for about 30 seconds breathing normally. Repeat on the other side for the same amount of time. For more details about the posture check this link.
11. Shava Udarakarshanasana/ Universal spinal twist:- This posture helps to realign the hips and releases the spinal tension. Do it for 30 seconds on each side. For more details about the posture check this link.
12. Relax in Shashankasana again for 30 seconds (Posture number 5 on this page).
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Try this sequence to open your Shoulder, Upper back and Chest