Pilates Tips for Better Posture with Lesley Logan

HI, I’m Lesley Logan! Welcome to my online Pilates studio. Today we’re going to talk about Pilates tips for better posture.

I’m really excited that you’re here and I have something to share with you. You don’t need any of this to actually help enhance your posture. In fact, the exercises I’m going to give you, not only will make all the workouts you do better in life, whether you do Pilates or something else. It also is going to make you feel and look better too.

So many people just want to lose an extra few pounds but I promise you, if you have better posture, you automatically look like you lost a few pounds there as it is. Plus, having better posture is important and integral in just feeling better and having a good digestive system, having a really awesome connection with your brain’s nervous system. Right?

The more our heads go forward the more we actually end up in a flight or fight experience. So you might be wondering why you’re always caught off-guard. The more your head goes forward, the more that happens. And everything in our life, including cardio, asks us to go this way.

So what I’m going to give you is something that you can do in your house, your office, while your waiting at the DMV… something that you can do very easily, all you need is a wall. Ok?

So what I want you to do, and you can do this with me, is come find a wall. I’m not going to be mean and make you put your heels against the wall, in fact you can have your heels just a bit away from the wall. Have soft knees and put your head and chest up against the wall.

So what you’re going to find is that it’s probably hard to get your head back. A lot of people get their head back and then their ribs pop off. Or they get their back up and their head comes forward.

All you have to do is, instead of putting your head back like this and putting your chin up, is keep your chin parallel to the floor – it’s going to feel like a double chin. And then take your arms like goal posts. Now a lot of you will be here, with your arms forward. That’s OK, that’s where you are.

In a perfect world, your elbows and hands would touch the wall, while the back of your head, your upper back, your stomach pulls in and your sacrum touches the wall. So this is what our goal is.

If you’re not there and your here, it’s fine. Go back as far as you can and reach your arms up, and pull your arms down. It’s not a big range of motion, it’s just up and down.

Notice what wants to happen here. For me, my middle back wants to pop off, a lot. But the more I can aim that down the more I can engage the muscles around my ribs, which is going to help pull my shoulders back where they need to be.

So that’s exercise 1, and you can do that for as long as you can.

For exercise 2 reach your arms forward. Keep your head back. Draw circles here, keeping your shoulders against the wall. So we’re not here (big circles) or here (back coming off), just little circles.

And then last thing you’re going to do is take your arms down and peel your head and chest off the wall. Your heart has to come back, your stomach has to pull back. You’re not going to come off in one chunk, and so notice if you do. Let your arms dangle in front of your knees. Shake your head no, no, no, no, no, and then yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. And then pull your stomach in. Make your stomach lift you up. Pull your ribs in. Try to keep your lower back and ribs against the wall as your heart comes on the wall and the back of your head comes to the wall. Then do it again.

Heart goes back. Can you control which vertebrae comes off the wall first? Then come here and let your arms dangle. Loosey goosey arm circles. Don’t try to muscle it. You should be able to hit your arm and it flaps in the wind. Reverse the circles. And then roll all the way up.

You can do that three to five times. And then take your arms back up and see if it’s any easier to get them back with your head back, your shoulders back.

So, that’s your homework for better posture. Try to do it every day for a week and see what happens.

I promise you though, the more you can connect to your back the more your front will hold you up and you will feel so much better at your desk and walking around in life. And then, when you meet me for Pilates you will know how to connect to arms to your back and it will benefit you even more.

I’m Lesley Logan, thank you so much for being here and I’ll see you soon!

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