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Keep the Spring in Your Spine this February!

By On January 31, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Have you ever been carrying something heavy and felt a twinge in your lower back or bent down to pick something up off the floor only to rise back up in pain? This might be because you’ve been holding your posture all wrong! There are, of course, many reasons why we can feel back pain, but one of the many causes is poor posture and alignment of the spine. Simply learning how to carry yourself around properly can make you feel lighter, more focused, and ready for the world!

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Your spine is made up of 26 bones all stacked up on one another. These bones are known as your vertebrae. Your vertebrae have layers of cartilage between them known as discs. The discs act as little cushions between our vertebrae to help us move pain-free. They are also like little shock absorbers that protect the bones when the spine experiences high impact, such as during running or jumping.

Our beautifully s-shaped spine contains several curves ultimately providing us with a giant spring in the middle of our bodies. Much like the way the shocks in your car work, our springy spine keeps us from getting jarred and also provides the stability necessary for daily and high-impact activities.

This brings me back to your posture and alignment. If you are holding yourself slouched or if you are carrying your bum or chest too far out from your center of gravity, you could be causing damage to your discs, slowly but surely, among other problems that could occur. Our spine was designed to perform optimally when stacked in a specific position, so if you’re deviating in any direction you are putting unnecessary stress on your discs, muscles, and central nervous system.

On the other hand, think of all the good you can do your spine and the body it supports by improving your posture immediately! Keep the Spring in Your Spine by taking one of our focused mat classes in February! See the schedule below to sign up!

In the meantime, on your own, you can follow these simple steps to find your neutral spine posture:

1) Stand or sit with equal weight on both feet (or cheeks if you’re sitting), your hands on your hips, thumbs pressing into the muscles in your low back that run alongside your spine known as your spinal extensors.
**Notice if these muscles are tight or relaxed. If they are tight then chances are you are holding your back in an overly curved position. If the muscles seem loose then you could be slouching a bit and causing less of a curve—opposite directions but both dangerous!

2) Now start to rock your pelvis back and forth until you feel the extensors relax beneath your thumbs. Hold this position.

3) Without letting your new position adjust, slowly lower your arms to your sides and raise your chest.

Try walking around like this. No doubt you will feel a huge difference in your gait (the way you walk). If you are seated, try rising from your chair with your new found posture. It will take some getting used to, but with time and practice it will become a normal posture for you. Try practicing it when you find yourself waiting in line or need a break from sitting at your desk. Exploring our bodies is FUN and even cooler when it gives us results we’ve been looking for, like less pain!

Studio City

Monday
4pm Gyrokinesis with Lora
All month long!

Thursday
7:30pm Level 1 Mat with Melissa
February 6th and 20th

Saturday
11am Level 3 Mat with Chad
February 8th and 15th

Porter Ranch

Tuesday
10am Level 1 Mat with Jenny
February 11th and 25th

Thursday
9am Level 1 Mat with Jenny
February 6th and 20th

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