Three Exercises for Better Posture

  1. External rotation

How: pin your elbows to your ribs—with your elbows bent at 90 and your palms up. Spread your palms as far as you can without your elbows leaving your ribs.

Perform this for up to 10 reps with a full exhale and inhale at your widest position. One set multiple times per day is ideal.

Why: When correcting posture, the first instinct is often to pull your shoulder blades back (scapular retraction). While there’s nothing wrong with this, part of the issue is many people tend to default to excessive internal rotation at the shoulder (glenohumeral) joint. Moving your shoulder blades back doesn’t address this but this exercise does.

  1. Table-top holds

How: Sit on the ground with your palms behind you and fingers pointing away. Lift your bum off the ground and work toward keeping your torso level. Focus on driving your palms away from you and into the ground.

Hold for 3-5 breaths for as many reps as you like. One set multiple times per day is ideal.

Why: While flexibility may be a factor, to create more balance within your body structure, you also have to develop strength equal to—or in excess of—the positions that you default to during the day.

  1. Scapular push-ups

How: Hold a conventional plank position on your forearms. Let your shoulder blades retract (come together) so that you drop. Double-check that your elbows haven’t moved. Now, push your forearms into the ground to come back up. Aim to have rounded shoulder blades at the top but try to keep movement restricted to the shoulder blades—and avoid flexion from the spine.

One set of 10 multiple times per day is ideal.

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