Until recently I was under the impression that if I sat up straighter, more often, that my posture would be better and joint pain reduced.
I even considered buying one of those devices you stick on your back that buzzes when you slouch. And when I exercise, I always do mobility exercises to support stabilizer muscles for improved posture and movement.
In short, my mobility slash posture management program has consisted of 3 distinct things:
1. I try to maintain good posture throughout the day, and avoid slouching forward as much as possible.
2. I do mobility exercises daily to work on the stabilizer muscles. I usually do these as part of warming up for my main workout.
3. I take 2 supplements to manage some arthritis and joint pain, Mimi’s Miracle Turmeric, which has been clinically shown to reduce joint pain even in people with osteoarthritis, plus an inexpensive Glucosamine Chondroitin, which is very affordable and readily available from any Costco or health food store.
So, I was somewhat surprised to learn that one of my three strategies, the first one, was surprisingly wrong.
To illustrate, I highly recommend this 12 minute video, based on the most recent evidence in the field of human bio-mechanics.
I don’t know about you, but I find this highly liberating. It makes sense that the body naturally gravitates to various positions to allow for increased comfort, movement of natural chemicals in the spine, and to relieve tension.
So there you have it. Like many other things in fitness and nutrition, evidence sometimes trumps theories, even those that sound very strong and legitimate.
And to be clear, I’m not suggesting that slouching is better than erect posture, or that this is an excuse to get lazy in maintaining our bodies stabilizer muscles or to work on good form.
Instead, I will continue trying to do all my workout motions with very good form and in solid positions, keep eating well and taking my supplements etc. However, when I just want to relax, slouch, or otherwise just let myself go into a new position that feels comfortable, I can do it without guilt!