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The Perfect Posture with

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Clare Chapman

www.bishopstonvoice.co.uk

October, 2015

Don’t get the hump! THE ‘Dowager’s Hump’ is thought of as an eldery woman’s problem – hence its name – but such distortions of the upper back affect both sexes. The rounding usually starts but goes unnoticed earlier in life with poor postural habits such as: Craning the neck, head and chin forward at desks, on mobiles, in cars and in conversation • Sitting in a ‘C’ shape that tucks the tail under and rounds the upper back, pushing the shoulders forward • Poor standing posture – either slumped or over arched A curved upper back is increasingly common these days, due to a combination of poor furniture and work habits, fashion, peer pressure, and poor adult role

models. While this shape is easily changeable in young, supple bodies, the evidence all around us shows that it usually becomes a habit that we literally grow into as we age. Sooner or later, this starts to take its toll: • Back pain from both over stretched and over tight ligaments and muscles • Wear and tear on the discs, arthritic and osteoporotic change in the vertebrae • Rounded shoulders, impingements and nerve problems • Tight neck muscles and headaches from holding the head up • Restricted breathing from a tight chest • Weaker, underused core muscles A common compensation for a rounded upper back (kyphosis) is to tense and arch the lower back in an effort to ‘straighten up’. Over-working the lumbar area comes to feels so

‘normal’ that people don’t even realise they are doing it and creating further problems down there too. The swimmer (pictured) shows the natural alignment of the spine common to infants, traditional populations, our ancestors and most athletes. There is very little curvature, which also helps shoulder and neck health. Esther Gokhale’s insightful book, ‘8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back’ teaches logical and inspiring strategies for returning towards this functional, pain-free alignment. Try a Free Posture Workshop with Gokhale Method teacher Clare Chapman: Wednesday 21st October, 7pm, Halo, Gloucester Rd. Sign up at www.gokhalemethod.com.

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To advertise, contact Emma on 0117 908 2121 Or 07715 770448. Got News? Call Rebecca On 07912 484405. Email: emma@bishopstonvoice.co.uk

Bishopston Voice - October '15  
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