I often get asked about posture: “What are the best resets to restore posture?”, or “Do you have any tips for correcting bad posture?”, or “Is there anything I can do to help my posture?” You get the idea… Posture is one of “those things” that has ideas or mental programs that build it to be something it’s not. What I mean is that for most people, because of the information they’ve been given, posture may not be what they think it is.
Many people believe posture is a position they hold, or they believe it’s a position they can practice in order to own it, keep it, change it or whatever. Because of this, there are also many people who believe they can’t change their posture – because they’ve tried before and nothing changed; except for their belief through experience that they can’t change it. So I think the best and fastest way to optimize or restore your posture is to let go of the ideas of what it is. Or, perhaps be more open to other ideas as to what it may be.
For example, posture is a reflex. It’s an expression of the health of the nervous system. The posture we have and move through is the posture our brain is telling our body to express itself with based on the information the brain is getting from the body.
Wait. What? Don’t get mad at your brain – it’s doing the best it can with what we feed it.
Posture is not a position you have to strive to hold. It is the position(s) you are able to hold. Here is a mind trip: your posture is probably always optimal given the information your brain is receiving from your body. It may not be optimal for the life you want to have or the activities you want to do, but it could be optimal for “where you are” in how you move and interact with the world around you.
Anyway, our posture is a reflexive expression. And it expresses a lot of information.
Posture tells us a great deal of information. Is that person powerful? Is that person fluid? Is that person healthy? Is that person happy? Is that person strong? It tells you about physical potential and ability and it also provides clues about mental and emotional states as well.
But posture also tells you about the kind of information the brain is getting from the body and the surroundings of the body. The better/cleaner/more complete information the brain gets, the better the potential of posture expression.
Ok, so how do we give the brain this information so the brain gives us better posture? Can’t I just try to stand a certain way or sit a certain way? Nope. You’re already standing and sitting the way that you can – that’s deep, it may take hours of reflexion. Anyway, the best way to feed and nourish your brain is the exact same way you were born to do it – move through your design.
So here goes, if I were going to place a bullseye on posture, I would go about it this way:
- Learn to keep tongue on the roof of the mouth. That alone may be the biggest golden ticket you ever find. It helps the head remember where it belongs. This is also head control by the way. Tongue placement is a huge part of head control.
- Learn to fill the lungs up from the bottom to the top by using the diaphragm as it was intended. This in combination with the tongue on the roof of the mouth is exponentially powerful in your entire health and wellbeing. This also becomes a great part of head control as well. This too is a deeper thought though…
- Learn to roll. Rolling FLOODS the brain with more information than you could imagine possible. And it’s really good information, it activates and develops the vestibular system to learn and collect everything about your body and then the vestibular system presents a cleaner, more complete “information package” to the brain.
- Spend time on your hands and knees AND keep your head up when you do. Rocking, crawling, or just being on your hands and knees while holding your head up completes the information your brain needs and wants in order to allow your body to optimally express itself via optimal posture.
These are all things you did the first few years of your life. These are truly all things you are intended to do and be able to do throughout the rest of your life. Before you balk at that and think, “I’m an adult. I’m not supposed to be on the ground rolling or rocking or crawling.” Know that those are foundational movements that undergird all other movements and if you were indeed moving as you should, you would be doing movements that resemble these no matter if you were lying on the floor or standing on two feet. But then if we all moved as we should, no one would ever be concerned about posture anyway.
So that’s my take on posture. It is an expression of you. It can change and you can change it, but you can’t fake it by holding it. You have to nurture it through intentional movement. If you embrace your design, your posture will express itself in a desirable fashion!