With our technology-driven world and sedentary lifestyles, it’s should be obvious that we are at a time in our life where it is more important than ever to reclaim the design and function of our bodies. All health and healing comes from your brain. Your brain signals to your body what your organs and organ systems need, when they need it and how often. This is not a belief. It’s a scientific and medical fact that the brain is the master controller of your body. How well your brain works is highly dependent on the health of your spine including the ability to move and alignment (posture).
Your posture tells your story. And it’s probably one about stress, pain, and hours and hours of sitting in awkward and nerve wrecking positions.
But by improving your posture, you can rewrite that story and give it a happy ending.
What Does Posture Influence?
Posture influences the brain. The brain is what influences health. The human body is meant to move. Just 100 years ago the majority of us plowed fields or spent all day physically working in a factory. Now we sit at desks, in cars, and on couches, staring at screens from sunup to sundown. The worst part is that the more you sit, the more you’ll want to sit because of the bad habits you’ve created for yourself.
Bad posture and excessive sitting compress the spine (up to 300 pounds compared to standing) and weaken crucial muscles so that even when you try to stand up and move around, you find yourself fatigued or in pain because you’ve lost the necessary mobility and strength. Your brain is wired to get better at what you practice, and most of us are now expert “sitters”.
We also practice unhealthy movements that allow us to complete our daily tasks without addressing the underlying problem of posture. If, for example, you’re injured, pregnant, or just stiff and weak from too much sitting, your body will compensate for imbalances in ways that affect your posture. Often it will recruit the wrong muscles to do a certain job and end up causing pain and injury. The brain is malleable enough to allow you to pick up an instrument or speak another language, so I’m telling you now that you can certainly learn how to find your best posture and make it your new way of being. You didn’t just wake up one day with poor posture; everyday life has made it that way. And you can use those same moments in life to create healthy changes. You just have to start and keep going!
How Does Posture Affect You?
“The more mechanically distorted a person is, the less energy is available for thinking, metabolism and healing.” -Roger Sperry, PhD and Nobel Prize winner fir brain research
Healthy, aligned posture lets you sit, stand, and move around without pain, but it also does so much more when we consider its impact on brain function. In fact, every single physiological response can be influenced by posture. It improves biological functions throughout your body by increasing circulation, keeping undue pressure off your internal organs, and giving your lungs the room they need to expand allowing optimal oxygen for your tissues. When your body feels better, so does your mind, which is why good posture also promotes confidence and mental clarity. Poor posture, on the other hand, puts wear and tear on your muscles and joints, leading to unhealthy movement patterns and pain. The resulting fatigue and discomfort affect you mentally and emotionally as well.