How having good posture during exercise helps prevent injuries

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While many consider having good posture to being more of a manners issue, a person’s bearing is actually one of the biggest factors when it comes to staying healthy, especially while exercising. How you stand, walk and sit during your workout can be critical to how your body recovers from intense physical activity, and implementing better posture into your life can go beyond just having good form during exercise. Here’s a few ways how having good posture can help you prevent substantial injuries in the long run, as well as proper positions for various workouts:

Pros of posture

When you exhibit correct form during workouts, you’re essentially protecting your bones, joints and spinal cord from any unnecessary damage. Proper posture while working out will keep your bones and joints in the correct alignment, which will ensure that your muscles are being utilized properly. When your muscles are being used the way they’re supposed to be, their endurance will strengthen, meaning that fatigue is less likely to occur when you work out.

The better posture you have during physical activity, the more likely you’ll be able to prevent certain diseases as you age. Proper bearing means your bones and joints are experiencing less stress, which in turn will drastically decrease the likelihood of developing arthritis. The ligaments that mold your spine together will also remain intact for longer, helping you avoid spinal deterioration in the future as well.

Proper posture for exercises

If weightlifting is an essential aspect of your workout, you know how important it is to make sure your body is in the right formation before picking up a dumbbell or barbell. Here are the recommended postures for some of the most popular exercises that depend on excellent form:

Squats

Even the slightest inclination of bad posture while squatting could significantly mess up your back for life. Before you bend down to pick up the barbell, make sure that your feet are shoulder-width apart, turning them outwards around 15 degrees. Once you’ve placed the bar behind your back, it’s important not to point your head upwards. This is a common mistake by squatters, as you should keep your head and neck level and neutral to avoid potential spinal strain. Always remember to take your time lowering and raising your legs, and exhale as you dip while inhaling as you return to starting position.

Deadlift

Effective deadlifting is a great exercise for improving your overall posture in all life activities, especially because it targets all the primary muscles in your back. Deadlifting all starts out with keeping your back as straight as possible, and make sure to have your head and neck remain in a straight line that’s level with your back.

Running

Everyone may think the way you run doesn’t impact posture, but it’s quite the contrary. Never tilt your head up or downwards, and swing your arms forward and back, not across your body. As your torso and back are kept upright and straight, take short strides with your legs, so you can reduce occurrences of muscle pulls.

Jill Lohmann is a Director of Operations for Accelerated Rehabilitation Centers and a certified physical therapist. Accelerated Rehabilitation Centers is a physical therapist owned and operated rehabilitation company with a network of 170 outpatient rehabilitation centers located throughout the Midwest, Arizona and Georgia.

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