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Tips to strengthen, keep your spine healthy

Poor posture can take a serious toll on the spine, shoulders, hips and knees. Here are tips to keep your spine healthy.
December 26, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
Poor posture can take a serious toll on the spine, shoulders, hips and knees. Shoulders back, chest out, head up - how is your posture?

Expert Dr. Steven Weiniger says good posture means your head, torso and pelvis are all stacked over your feet while you stand.

"We label those areas posture zones, and we try to pull posture zones towards center," said Weiniger.

He took a posture picture of Dee Hobbs, which showed her zones aren't as well-aligned as she thought. Her pelvis was located to the left of centerline.

He says, Dee can improve her posture and so can you.

"Making people aware of their body is the, the first thing you need to do to start functionally strengthening your posture," said Weiniger.

His formula: BAM 321 - balance three times a day, alignment two times a day, and motion once a day.

Stand tall and touch the wall.

To improve balance, lift your leg so your thigh is parallel to the ground while touching a wall. Hold it for five breaths.

For alignment, move side-to-side while sitting on a balance ball.

For motion, try moving forward and backward on the ball.

While sitting at your desk, place your monitor and keyboard right in front of you so your torso doesn't twist.

Also, make sure your hips are higher than your knees while you sit. Choose a chair you can adjust slightly forward or put a pillow on your seat.

Weiniger says kids are more at risk for poor posture today because of tablets, phones, and video games. They often sit in a tense position with their shoulders and lower backs rounding forward while using these devices.

He says the best way to help them improve their posture is to take a picture, so they can see just how hunched they are.


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