Woman doing exercises next to her work station

At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, our skilled physiatrists, in addition to diagnosing and treating spinal and musculoskeletal conditions, also educate our patients about how to maintain good posture to improve their health and prevent injuries. Over the years, we have found that most people are not aware of how important posture is to physical health. Good posture can increase energy and decrease stress and fatigue. Keeping your body in proper alignment can help also prevent a host of medical problems (e.g. headaches, neck and lower back pain, muscle aches, injuries), and even elevate your mood. One of the primary benefits of exercise and working toward good posture is that it makes you conscious of your own body and muscle groups, helping you to move more efficiently and relieving imbalance.

Ways Our Doctors Help You Develop and Maintain Good Posture Through Exercise

We have the experience and innovative methods to help you heal from injury and deal successfully with disease conditions by:

  • Diagnosing your problem precisely with cutting-edge equipment and techniques
  • Offering you several nonsurgical treatment options, including customized physical therapy, corticosteroid injections, and acupuncture
  • Providing you with exercises and therapies (e.g. PRP, PEMF) that will lessen pain, improve function, increase circulation, accelerate healing, and lessen fatigue

Our minimally invasive intervention can do more than make you feel better. It can also lower your risk of injury as you go about your daily life — doing computer work, driving, heavy lifting, sports activities, etc.). Our services include discussions and guidance concerning how best to improve your posture through exercise.

Preparing for Postural Exercises

Before beginning postural exercises, establish a baseline by practicing standing and sitting correctly:

Standing Tall

Stand straight, shoulders relaxed and slightly pulled back, feet about a shoulder-width apart, with most of your weight on the balls of your feet, stomach tucked in, knees bent slightly, head level (ears over shoulders). If standing for a long period, shift weight from one foot to the other.

Sitting Pretty

Sit straight, shoulders relaxed but not rounded, in a chair that allows you to keep your feet on the floor. Don’t cross your legs. Sit back so that the chair supports your lower back. If you’re working at a computer, keep the screen at eye level to avoid neck or eye strain.

Exercises to Improve Posture

It should be remembered though that if you are presently in pain or experiencing limited mobility, before beginning an exercise regimen you should consult with a knowledgeable doctor to avoid worsening an existing problem.

1. “Climbing” the Wall

Stand with your head, back, and buttocks pressed against the wall while tilting your pelvis to avoid arching your back. Lift your arms as high as possible, then, squeezing the muscles of your mid-back, slide your arms down toward your shoulders. All of your body, including the backs of your hands, should be pressed against the wall during this exercise. Slide your arms down to slightly below your shoulders. Hold this position for a minute, then push your arms back up. Repeat 10 times.

2. Bowing Down 

Sit on your shins with your knees together, your feet touching the big toes. Lean forward at the hips and stretch your hands all the way forward on the floor, your buttocks resting on your heels, your head on the floor. Rest in this position for about 5 minutes while breathing deeply. Relax in this pose for up to 5 minutes while continuing to breathe deeply. This exercise stretches your spine, glutes, and hamstrings, and relaxes tension in your neck and lower back.

3. Shoulder Squeeze

Stand tall, arms at your sides. Pull your shoulder blades together so that you feel your muscles stretch. Hold for a few seconds, relax and repeat 10 times. This exercise will strengthen and stabilize your upper back and shoulders, and give your chest muscles greater flexibility.

4. Downward-Facing dog

This well-known yoga position does a fine job of balancing your body and relieving back pain while strengthening and aligning back muscles. It also improves posture if done regularly.

First, lie on your stomach on the floor, press into your hands as you tuck your toes under your feet, and lift your heels. Then lift your hips so that your body makes an upside-down V.

Tuck your chin into your chest. Press firmly into your hands and hold this pose for up to a minute.

5. The Bridge

This exercise helps to strengthen your core. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Tighten your abdominal muscles and glutes and raise your hips off the floor so that your knees make a straight line to your shoulders. Hold this position for 30 seconds, then lower your hips, relax and repeat.

6. Pelvic Tilt

Lie on the floor with your knees bent, your feet flat on the floor, and your arms extended at your sides. Then, tighten your abdominal muscles and glutes in order to raise your tailbone upwards slightly (about 2 inches). Hold for a few seconds, then relax. Repeat 5-10 times.

More Exercise Can Improve Posture

As previously noted, it is best to consult with a doctor who has examined you and perhaps done some diagnostic tests to make sure what types of postural exercises are appropriate in your particular case and will be most beneficial. For starters, work on sitting and standing in proper positions.

Contact Our Experienced Doctors Today for Help with Improving Your Posture

Getting in touch with one of our five convenient offices may not only improve your posture 

but improve your quality of life. We are dedicated to alleviating your aches and pains without surgery and to helping you increase your flexibility and sense of well-being. Contact us now to move your life in the right direction.