SMARTer bodies

Tag Archives: good posture

What Does “Good Posture” Feel Like?

Good Posture: What does it look like?  How do I get it?  One of Melissa’s students asked, “What should my shoulders being doing?  They should be shoved back right?  What about my pelvis?”  Whoa, folks!  Let’s think of organizing ourselves from the inside, not the outside.  Watch the video below as Melissa talks about the breath in posture. By the way, you want more of this kind of great information contact us and go to the Breathing Project where breath-guru extraordinaire Leslie Kaminoff leads clinics and workshops that reveal the role of breathing in…everything.

Say Hello to Dr. Emily Splichal

We pride ourselves on being able to refer our clients to some of the best in the body maintenance industry and today we want you to know about Dr. Emily Splichal.  Check out the bio:

Dr Emily Splichal, Podiatrist and Human Movement Specialist, is the Founder of the Evidence Based Fitness Academy. With over 10 years in the fitness industry, Dr Splichal has dedicated her medical career towards studying postural alignment and human movement as it relates to foot posture and foot strength.

She’s even made an appearance on Oprah teaching us how to walk in heels without falling over and making fool’s of ourselves Read More

Why Won’t My Neck Relax!

Why Won’t My Neck Relax!

You may feel that sometimes, no matter how much you try to stretch your neck there is no relief.  One of the ways in which this may manifest is if you lay down on the floor without a pillow and it feels like you have work to release.  Maybe your chin juts towards the ceiling.  Maybe your neck feels “crunchy” in the back.  So what do you need to do? Instinctually, you may react to the tightness with attempts to stretch the necks muscles more.

But this situation presents an important lesson that we will touch upon again and again in this blog and in our work:

There is a difference between Stretch and Release.  Stretch does NOT always equal Release!

What if the neck muscles that feel tight are actually overstretched and you are not perceiving the sensation correctly?  To further illuminate, take an internal body scan and see if you can sense if you have very tight pectoral muscles.  This may be a result of sitting at a computer for many hours, reading at a desk, or just holding bad posture.  The chronically contracted muscles on the front of your body are constantly pulling and forcing the back muscles to stretch to their maximum capacity.  The tight sensations in the back are muscles screaming for release not more stretch.

Try working on the pecs with body work, massage, or gently stretching them…whatever works best for you to open those muscles.  Now try actually using the muscles in the back body by contracting the postural muscles.  Lie down and squeeze the scapula together by contracting the muscles in between.  See how far down you can take that squeeze.  This may be difficult, because you are lying down.  But, try alternating squeezing the muscles and releasing the contraction.  Doing this, after opening the pecs, can begin to rebalance your posture and equalize the work of the front and back muscles.  In other words, you will open your tight pecs and give release/relief to the overly stretched back muscles.  Once you’ve alternated the squeeze and release of the postural muscles 3 – 5 times lie down on the floor and see if you feel a difference in your previously “tight” neck.  Is it easier to release your head to the ground with out a pillow?  Do you have an easier time tucking your chin back and keeping it there?

Try this and give us your feedback!