a special feature by Karen Schwalbe-Jones, owner Harmony Studios*

Most everyone is concerned about healthy eating, but what about poor posture? As we get older, posture can get worse and worse, so grandparents, please take heed…

In my years of working with the masses, I’ve never seen such a horrific, damaging posture trend. I use the word “horrific” because this slouchy posture is getting worse and worse and it’s literally shortening our lives! ‘Tis a BOLD statement, I get it.

Most of us are completely unaware our everyday existence is literally damaging our bodies more than any other single facet of our lives. We think a few short hours a week of working out will correct what we spend on an average of 35x’s more time doing incorrectly! We know more about our cars and jobs than our bodies…and we can turn those in and quit.

In this illustration, look at the postures from a critical, geometric and or physical (as in physics) perspective. Most of us assume one of them. Why do we do this? Because the posture is holding us up!

posture examples

Think about weight, mass, pressure, points of pressure. When you see an angle or a BIG curve, that’s where the pressure is. A healthy spine is a series of curves all created to sublimely balance each other out in order to hold up your person. It’s a stunning and masterful work of art!

Normal, RESTING posture must be where the back of your head sits over your back/scapulae…not chin forward.

GET THIS NASTY STATISTIC: Every inch forward your head sits on your cervical (neck) spine is worth 10 pounds. So! Look around! Look at the people who are chin forward and/or down. For every inch that your head is forward, it’s literally pulling your spine along forward. Does this have to be forever? Maybe not, if taken care of. If not, yep.

The average human spends 8 hours a day looking at a screen! Your screen, every screen needs to be at face height and arms length. Normal, RESTING posture must be where the back of your head must sit over your back/scapulae…not chin forward.

What do we do is the larger conversation?
1. Take a picture of your posture.
2. Notice how you stand and how you walk.
3. How do you look at your mobile phone? Do you look down at the phone, instead of looking viewing it at eye height?
4. Do Pilates! Seriously. Go. Now.

*Karen Schwalbe-Jones is the owner of Harmony Studios, www.harmonystudiosla.com. With UCLA degrees in Science of Kinesiology and Psychology and over 22 years of weight training and rehabilitation experience, Karen provides friends and clients with well-rounded physical, mental and emotional health. As a Pilates practitioner, she has enjoyed fine-tuning her education with special populations, such as pre and post natal, geriatrics, MS and stroke patients. Karen explains, “Pilates is the most complete exercise approach, encouraging people to connect their minds with their bodies. All of what we do as human beings begins with the neurological and appears in the physical. Therefore, how well we condition our brains to create physical responses is how strong we can become.”