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 Exercise & Workout Routines

october 2012
Posture Perfect
Gavin Holt
Training your body to walk, sit and lie in positions that would cause least strain to the muscles and ligaments supporting it during any activity or movement, is good or right posture.

A proper posture is essential for many reasons, not least being the impression it conveys about you. And very truly, it is about having a strong spine and a straight back!

A good and correct posture keeps the bones and joints aligned and healthy, decreases pressure on the spine, prevents fatigue and strain or overuse of muscles, and holds off backache and muscular pain. Perfect posture can be achieved if you stand, sit, and walk with shoulders squared, chest upright, tummy tucked in and back straight.

Posture Killers
A hunched back, slouching shoulders, a slack spine and chest pulled inwards are culprits for a bad posture.

A good posture depends mainly on a strong lower back. To strengthen your lower back, you must work on the TA muscles (transversus abdominus muscles). They are a group of muscles located on either side of your lower back, starting at your navel, and ending on either side of your lower back.

Weak TA muscles lead to slouching, drooping of shoulders, and recurring pain in the lower back, which can pull your entire body down. The strain from sitting or standing for long hours without any breaks in between, and incorrect ways of sitting at the desk or behind the wheel while driving, can also lead to a weak lower back.

Solution: Basic exercises like surya namaskar, good mornings, opposite hand and leg raisers while lying on the floor, both hand-leg raisers and pelvic raisers, performed regularly will help strengthen your back leading to posture correction and good posture.

Since most major muscle groups in the body are interlinked, your next focus should be to strengthen your Glutes. Weak glutes means a weak back.

Solution: To work on your glutes, follow a basic regime of exercises like cat stretches and leg raisers.

Note!

Consult your doctor or trainer and discuss your medical history before trying these exercises. People with lower back injuries must not attempt these exercises without supervision.

Gavin Holt is Fitness Guru, Hyderabad.