3 Exercises to Reverse Bad Posture

Question: When I stay loose and stand upright, I have bad posture. Slouching, sway back without my pelvis being rotated, and my shins are not vertical. How can I fix ugly posture, strength in the back, glutes, calf, ankles and all of the above?

Answer: When it comes to posture, what needs to be worked on is thoracic mobility or mid-back work. Many of us sit and, when we sit, we progressively get a worse posture. What happens is the mid-back tightens up, and we need to loosen up that mid-back area.  

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#1 – Crossing Arms and Arching Back

Begin in an upright sitting position, maintaining proper alignment with your head, shoulders and hips. Cross your arms across your chest. Contract your core and arch your back, focusing on the stretch happening in your low back area. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement.

Crossing Arms and Arching Back

Start with one set of five to 10 repetitions. Perform the exercise in a smooth, controlled movement with a good stop at the end position. The intensity is light. The purpose of this exercise is to work on the thoracic extension.


#2 – Arms on Shoulders With Rotation

Begin in an upright sitting position, maintaining proper alignment with your head, shoulders and hips. Place your hands on your shoulders, extending your elbows out to the sides just below shoulder-height. Contract your core, and then rotate your upper body to one side. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement on the opposite side.

Arms on Shoulders With Rotation

Start with one set of five to 10 repetitions on each side. Perform the exercise in a smooth, controlled movement with a good stop at the end position. The intensity is light. The purpose of this exercise is to work on thoracic rotation.


#3 – Side Bending

Begin in an upright sitting position, maintaining proper alignment with your head, shoulders and hips. Cross your arms across your chest. Rotate your upper body, and bend to one side, bringing one shoulder up towards the ceiling. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement on the opposite side.

Side Bending

Start with one set of five to 10 repetitions on each side. Perform the exercise in a smooth, controlled movement with a good stop at the end position. The intensity is light. The purpose of this exercise is to work on thoracic rotation and side bending.

Posture is so important because it does not only help us look good, but it also helps us become flexible and strong. These three exercises are an excellent starting point to help improve your posture and also possibly even help relieve some mild back pain, especially your muscles. There are also some stretches that you can do that will not only help improve your posture but also increase your lung capacity as well.

If you find yourself sitting all day long, whether at a desk in an office or behind the wheel of a vehicle, you need to take some time to help reverse the adverse effects all that sitting can do on your posture.