By Kristin Condon: MYX Coach
It’s easy to see how technology impacts our posture and can lead to pain and discomfort (take a moment now to notice the angle of your head and shoulders in relation to the rest of your body as you read this!). We all do it, and the more we do it, the more discomfort we feel.
This “tech neck” syndrome is a great signal that we need to make a postural change. Technology isn’t going away, but we can make choices about how we interact with it so it doesn’t take us back to how we looked in the Stone Age! With some small adjustments, we can create new habits that will help us in the future.
Small, simple, but regular changes can help you create your most vibrant posture, lead a life full of energy and vitality, and even boost your mood! Here are three multitasking moves that will not only help relieve pain and discomfort from staring at our screens too much, but will also increase our optimism and help us maintain a positive outlook. Never underestimate the power of good posture!
1. Things Are Looking Up
Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip distance apart. Clasp your hands together and place them at the base of your skull with your thumbs hitting about the middle of your neck, making a basket for your head with your hands.
Then lift your chest and point your elbows to the sky while keeping your belly and legs firm. Try opening your mouth to release jaw tension, and lift your eyes as well. Take three big breaths through your mouth and imagine filling up your heart and lungs.
Release from the stretch and take a moment to notice how you feel. Allow your head to come back into alignment with your ears over your shoulders.
2. Lunge for Your Life
For this next move, if you struggle with balance, separate the upper and lower body into two parts rather than doing them simultaneously. Step back into a small lunge with your right leg, reach both arms up overhead and then your right hand down your back toward your shoulder-blades, with the left hand on your elbow gently guiding the tricep stretch.
Pull your chin in and press the back of your head into your right forearm. Take a nice deep breath and notice the changes happening. To take this a step further (I said multi-tasking, didn’t I?), release the chin, and bend slowly to the left. If your balance is stable, turn your chin up and look toward the sky.
To come out of it, bring your ribs back over your hips, slowly release your arms to your side and step in to stand strong with your weight evenly distributed over both legs and feet. Take a moment to notice the whole right side of your body. Then repeat on the left.
3. Give the World a Hug
Extend both arms out to your sides stretching through your fingers with palms facing forward. Keeping the arms extended, squeeze your shoulder blades together and send the heart through your arms.
Stay here for a moment and notice the alignment of your whole body - hips over feet, ribs over hips, ears over shoulders. Draw your belly button slightly in. Keep squeezing your shoulder blades together, opening your chest. Draw your elbows into your ribs and slowly rotate the upper body to the right while keeping your hips still.
Breathe, and slowly turn your chin over your shoulder. Stay here for a moment. Unwind and extend your arms again, stretching the muscles in your chest. Then take it all slowly to the left.
Go slow. Take your time. Be gentle, and notice. Practice these moves throughout your day to increase the vibrancy of your posture, the openness of your heart, and the brightness of your outlook!