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Watch the New Video!

Dr. Mailie Harris joins us from The Chiropractic Wellness Studio in Edmonton Alberta to demonstrate several easy adjustments you can make to improve posture. This can enhance your confidence, improve your appearance, and help ease neck and back pain.

Video Transcription: Three Simple Tips for Better Posture

- Hi everyone, welcome back to Dr. Ho's Healthy Living Blog. We're very excited because we have Dr. Mailie Harris of the Chiropractic Wellness Studio in Edmonton with us again today. And Dr. Harris is going to talk to us today about posture, why posture is important, how we can check our posture, and maybe some ways to fix it. Dr. Harris, can you tell us a little bit about why posture is so important?

- Posture is very important because people look to your posture to give them clues on what your age is, how healthy you are, and how confident you are as a person. So we want people to think more on the generous side of those things, so I'm going to give you ways to judge your own posture, based on sitting, standing and laying, and then strategies to improve it.

- Okay, well let's get to checking our posture then.

- And you have a lovely posture by the way.

- Oh, thank you.

- So, for sitting postures, one of the things I think is most important is to just keep moving subtly, so that you don't stress the same tissues for too long. You're aiming for your ear over your shoulder. You want your screen just at eye level, and shift your weight around so that you're slightly moving all the time. You also want your pelvis to be slightly higher than your knees, knees at 90 degrees, and your knees below your pelvis level-wise, and your feet flat on the ground.

To check your standing posture, I want you to stand with your back against the wall, feet six inches away, and you're going to put you head, your shoulders, and your buttocks against the wall. So by looking at posture while you're standing, if you realize that you're a little bit rolled forward, which a lot of people are, here are three things you can do to help fix that.

The first one is Wall Angels, so I want you to put your arms at 90 degrees against the wall, and you're gonna bring them above your head. The temptation will be for your elbows to come off the wall, because a lot of the time you're very tight in your chest muscles, but I want you to really work hard at keeping them back, and go up and down.

The next exercise are Chin Tucks, so start with your head slightly forward, and tuck your chin back in to the wall, and push against the wall. That's going to activate your suboccipital muscles, which are the muscles that are located on the back of the neck, and attach up to the skull, and those will help you bring your posture up. So, chin tuck and hold, let go and back and hold and let go.

The third thing you can do is stretch out your pectoral muscles, and those are the muscles that attach between your chest and your shoulder. They tend to get really tight, from driving, texting, working on the computer. We want to open those up. So one of the best ways to do that is put a 90 degree angle, with your arm against the wall, and you're going to turn out, and hold for 15 to 30 seconds, both sides.

It's also really important to consider your posture when you're sleeping since you maintain that position for seven to nine hours. So I like to tell patients to use a pillow in order to keep your spine neutral. So, if you sleep on your back, you want to prop the pillow underneath your knees. And if you sleep on your side, you wanna prop the pillow between your knees. Don't sleep on your stomach because that will arch your back, and that's hard on your back all night.

- Thank you so much Dr. Harris for giving us those tips and tricks on not only checking our posture, but how to fix it. And hopefully we'll see you again soon.

- See you next time.

- Bye.

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