Postural Retraining & Muscle Balance


POSTURE

When people not only exercise with but live their life with good posture they have the ability to ‘function’ efficiently and so with reduced risk or injury.

What is ideal posture?

Posture describes the position the body is in at any one time. Ideal posture places the skeleton in good alignment in order to distribute forces travelling through it.

Much like a car, regular use and repetitive trips may lead to imbalances and changes in the ideal distribution of forces that are experienced during movement.

What can cause poor posture?

  • Muscle imbalance

  • Poor core stability

  • Low self esteem/depression

  • Lack of physical awareness

  • Occupation

  • Pregnancy

  • Injury

  • Disability

  • Congenital joint or spinal abnormalities

Which muscles in the human body generally tend to get tight and shorten (become tight)?

  • Rectus Femoris (major muscle in quads/thigh)

  • Hamstrings

  • Hip flexors (iliopsoas)

  • Pec major/minor (chest)

  • Upper trapezius (back/shoulders)

  • Scaleni

  • Levator Scapulae (muscles around the shoulder blade)

  • Sternocleidomastoid (neck)

  • Gastrocnemius (calf)

  • Lower back (QL)

Which muscles in the human body generally become weak (lengthen)?

  • Lower back muscles

  • Deep abdominal muscles

  • Lower/mid trapezius and rhomboids

  • The gluteals (bum!)

  • Muscles of the rotator cuff (a group of small stabilising muscles in the back)

Types of muscles imbalances

  • Agonist – Antagonist (e.g. bicep/tricep or chest/back)

  • Left – Right (often lower back or shoulders)

  • Commonly TIGHT muscles

Commonly WEAK muscles

IDENTIFYING POSTURAL ABNORMAILITIES