Our posture cannot be considered as a single act or position, but a unique moment in time that captures only one possible postural position.
The upright standing posture is a beginning, not an end to uncovering perfect posture. It is used as a benchmark by which we begin the posture assessment process, allowing uncovered changes to be a movement away from and/or towards our ‘ideal’ posture.
“Proper posture is believed to be the state of musculoskeletal balance that involves a minimal amount of stress and strain on the body” (Yip et al, 2008, p. 148)
However when this balance is altered by habit, accident, injury, or some other unwanted issue, then we are likely to fall into postural disorder.
A taste of what to look for…
What does this do to your shoulders and neck? Are they resting any easier? Or, are you beginning to feel discomfort in other areas around your shoulders…in your chest? Your neck? Your arms, maybe?
Consider what your head is now doing? Is it placed comfortably on your shoulders, or does it rest too far forward, creating extra strain on the neck?
While this may be a simplified description, the underlying principle remains: to improve your posture you must look at what your whole body is doing.
*A note about ‘ideal’ or perfect posture
These landmarks and ‘ideal’ positions are not possible for all. They can be considered a point of reference, not an absolute requirement. We should work towards our own ‘ideal posture’, which takes into consideration the unique nature of our own body type and characteristics – allowing room for all possible variations to unfold.