As an aspiring teen model, you need to understand the importance of having a good posture.
But what does it mean exactly to have a good posture, and how can you improve yours?
What does it mean to have a good posture?
When you are standing up, your chin should be parallel to the floor while your shoulders are relaxed an even. Your spine, on the other hand, should be in a neutral position, neither arching nor flexing. The arms are placed to the sides with the hips in an even position. The knees point straight forward while the feet evenly bear your weight.
When you sit down, you should maintain roughly the same position with the exception of your lower extremities. Your knees should be placed at a position where it is at the same level as your hips while your knees and feet point forward.
Why good posture matters
It does not matter whether you are a teen model, a teacher, or any other professional – good posture is essential. Why? Here are a few reasons.
When you have proper posture, you are keeping your bones and joints in proper alignment. In turn, this aids in the optimal performance of your muscles and prevent joint problems. When the muscles perform optimally, you will require less energy to move and minimize muscle fatigue.
Good posture also minimizes stress on your ligaments. This can help prevent injuries associated with putting undue stress on ligaments.
When you maintain poor posture, you can become susceptible to a host of injuries and conditions, most notably back pain.
Correcting bad posture
In order to attain good posture, there are a few essential things that you need to have. These include strength and flexibility of muscles, normal motion of the joints, and mindfulness of your posture.
Is it possible to fix a bad posture?
In order to better answer that question, it is critical to have a fair idea to know why you might have bad posture in the first place.
There are different causes of poor posture. The most common of these are pregnancy, wearing high-heeled shoes, obesity, stress, weak or tight muscles. Lifestyle and work habits like improper and prolonged sitting and use of ergonomically poor furniture also contribute significantly to incorrect posture.
It is possible to correct a bad posture. However, the longer you have improper posture, the longer it will take to fix it.
Start correcting your posture by being mindful of it at all times, whether you are standing, walking, sitting, or even lying in bed. Apart from that, there are a few exercises that can help restore proper posture.
Correcting your sitting position
Getting into proper posture while sitting down can be challenging if you have been accustomed to slouching. For many people, slouching in a chair can be quite comfortable if not for the strain on the muscles.
Overcome the minor discomfort of sitting correctly, and soon, good posture will come naturally. Again, always be mindful of your position. You can supplement this by strengthening the muscles involved through exercises like planks and bridges.
Maintaining a neutral back position
If you have a tendency to stick your butt out when standing, you may have a condition known as hyperlordosis. This condition is common among pregnant, women who wear high heels, and people who are overweight.
Apart from performing exercises like planks, leg raises, thigh and hip flexor stretches, you have to maintain the natural alignment of the head, shoulders, and neck. One good way to achieve this is to think that there is an imaginary string on your head. Use that string to pull your head upward.
On the other hand, if you have a flat back where your lower back is straight, and the pelvis is tucked, you can blame muscle imbalances and prolonged sitting.
Correct this issue by strengthening your neck, shoulder, core, back, and leg muscles.
Checking your neck and shoulders
The shoulders and the neck are integral to maintaining proper posture.
People whose jobs require sitting in front of a computer for extended periods usually have what hunched backs. On the other hand, people who frequently use their mobile devices have what many experts are now calling as “text neck.”
You can correct these problems by strengthening your neck, upper back, shoulders, and chest.
Another issue commonly caused by sitting in front of the computer is poking chin. When your monitor or seat is too low, you have to compensate by looking upwards. This is also common in people with hunched backs.
Correct this problem by lengthening your neck before tucking your chin. At the same time, you need to move your shoulders down while aligning your back with your spine. Remember to pull in your stomach to match the natural curve of the lower back. You should also adjust your monitor’s and seat’s height, so you do not have to strain yourself while working.
Protect your neck from strain and prevent imbalances by holding the phone with your hand instead of cradling the handset between your neck and shoulders. Alternatively, you can invest in a headset.
You can relieve pain and stiffness in your neck by performing neck stretches and rotations and chest stretches.
If you stand with your arms hanging by your sides and you notice your knuckles are facing forward, you might have rounded shoulders. This condition may be caused by muscle imbalance, excessive performance of some exercises, and poor posture.
Counter this problem by performing exercises like planks, bridges, pull-ups or seated rows, and chest stretches.
It’s not too late
Correcting your posture is not just about looking good. Maintaining proper posture can help your health and prevent medical conditions, boost your confidence, and increase your productivity at work. Combining the exercises mentioned above and being attentive to your body can help bring about changes in your posture.
Initially, you might feel some discomfort in correcting your posture. But if you keep at it and pay attention to your body, soon, maintaining proper posture becomes natural.
Adam Jacobs is the Managing Director of Bubblegum Casting, the longest running agency specialising in babies, children and teen talent in Australia. Bubblegum Casting works with some of Australia’s biggest brands, media properties and agencies to secure talented children to work in Television, Film and Modelling roles.