There’s more to your posture than standing or sitting taller and straighter. In fact, posture plays a key role in overall body health. Circulation, range of motion, releasing pressure on your organs and ligaments, all have posture to thank.
Posture can also prevent repetitive strain or injury. This is because when we sit all day at work or perform the same actions, our posture degrades over time. The result? We start to develop aches and pain but don’t always understand the source.
Luckily, Pilates restores your body’s strength and stability, allowing you to correct your posture in a matter of weeks! So, here’s the top 3 Pilates moves to get you on the road to better posture.
3 Pilates Exercises for Better Posture
Mermaid Side Stretch
When was the last time your side had a good stretch? The Mermaid exercise helps lengthen your side and obliques to relieve tension and lengthen your body.
- Start in a Z-sit position, making sure both sit bones are level.
- Rest the arm that is closest to your feet on the mat and raise the other out to the side of you.
- Inhale and press the hand on the mat further into the mat. As you exhale raise your floating arm over your head and lean to the side.
- Allow your arm to reach over to the side.
- When you’re bent over to the side, inhale deeply.
- Exhale and return to your starting position.
- Then repeat on the other side.
Keeping in line with the water theme, the Swimming exercise aims to strengthen your back which prevents you from getting as tired after a long day at your desk. It’s also an excellent extension-based exercise allowing us to restore length in our hip flexors.
- Starting on your stomach, close your legs and place your arms outstretched overhead.
- Begin to lift your legs and arms simultaneously, activating your glutes.
- Lift alternate arms and legs slightly higher (left arm, right leg etc.) in quick succession as if you’re mimicking a swim.
- Pay attention to small deliberate movements, fluttering the arms and legs, and keep ‘swimming’ for 30 seconds before resting.
By strengthening your back, hamstrings, hips, and abdominals, the Saw exercise provides long-term stability and a foundation to maintain good posture. It’s traditionally performed on a mat so you’ll need no equipment, but Teri in our tutorial has modified the exercise on the Pilates box.
- Place your left arm in the 1st position and right arm in the 5th position.
- Extend your legs from underneath and flex the feet.
- Rotate in the space between your ribcage and your pelvis.
- Reach down with your left arm to your right foot whilst looking over your right shoulder.
- Sit back up and center.
Benefits of Improved Posture
Making changes to your posture can make a massive difference, even going as far as to improve your performance at work. Plus, it makes you stronger and healthier.
For more ways to maintain your correct posture check out Alix’s 5 posture tips here. Or feel free to pop into the studio and allow one of our qualified and expertly trained instructors to assess and help you.
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