It seems that I run across people complaining of knee pain, shoulder pain, or neck and back pain more than ever these days. When I start to examine the cause it usually stems from improper alignment while doing exercises or day to day activities. My goal as a Pilates Instructor is to teach individuals how to correct and prevent pain or to keep it from happening at all.
Sitting Straight Does Make a Difference
|Poor computer posture.|
|This is better!|
Next, when sitting while working or eating we tend to slump over and round the shoulders and upper back which again will put undue pressure on the neck and upper back. This poor posture will literally be a pain in the neck if not corrected. Instead of rounding the upper body, sit tall with an open tail bone and hinge forward through the hip crease to lean towards the desk or table. Always think shoulders back and down (I know it sounds funny but I tell my clients “heavy armpits, shoulders loose” and it works!) Just being aware of where our bodies are sitting will make a huge difference in how we feel at the end of the day. At first this may be hard to remember but stick with it!
Proper Alignment During Exercise is Key
|Improper alignment in the all 4's position.|
|Much better, stable base!|
creates a strong base that will help to stabilize the body better when you balance or come into plank. Keep the head in line with the spine and soften through the shoulders and upper back. I see numerous people that round too much here and keep their head either too high or too low which puts too much pressure on the neck. If you can, have someone place a foam roller or yard stick lined up down your spine running from the back of the head to the tail bone making sure all parts of the back and head touch the roller. Once the body is positioned correctly you have created a strong base ready for anything!
Remember, take care of your body, it’s the only one you get!