Expert Tips on How to Improve Posture

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There are some easy ways to achieve improve posture, according to Sydney pilates expert Olga Tamara.

Olga Tamara has over 30 years experience as a personal trainer and fitness instructor. She was a classical dancer with the Australian Ballet Company from 1971 – 1976, and since then has turned to focus on Classical Pilates, owning her own Pilates studio, Authentic Pilates Studio, in Lilyfield, Sydney.

Bondi Beauty spoke to Olga about how to get perfect posture, here’s what she had to say:

“One of the best ways to improve your posture is by doing Pilates, which helps with body alignment, strength, flexibility, coordination and much more.

When it comes to posture, the most important muscles are your deep abdominal muscles, lower back and glutes.

In Classical Pilates (one of the many methods of Pilates training), these muscles are referred to as your “powerhouse.”

By working your “powerhouse” in Pilates you will move more efficiently, improve body function, increase your range of movement and relieve pressure from not only your internal organs but also your precious spinal cord.

Most of us are born with perfect alignment and then sometimes things go haywire, mostly due to bad habits. But don’t stress – these habits can be broken over time and the body can be re-trained.

The first step to improving your body alignment is simply checking out your posture in front of a full-length mirror. Look at your alignment and honest with yourself. Don’t stand as if you’re taking a selfie!

Here is what you should be looking out for when checking your posture:

  • Do look lopsided? Where is your weight distributed? Left leg? Right leg?
  • Are your muscles alive and awake supporting your skeleton?
  • Are your shoulders rolling forward or back? Is your pelvis resting forward or back? Is your head forward of your shoulders?

If you can tell that your alignment is not spot on, here are a few tips to think of as you go about your daily routine to help break bad postural habits:

  • Uncross your legs when you’re sitting down
  • Always draw your back muscles down and zip your abdominal muscles UP!
  • When you’re at a computer, sit back in your chair, not hovered forward over the computer.
  • Avoid sitting at your desk for long periods of time

Now that you’re on your way to improving your alignment, think about your state of mind, your mood.

A lot of poor alignment is due not only to bad postural habits but our frame of mind.

If you imagine being closed up in a dark empty room alone with no windows for 24hrs your posture will change. It will contract, withdraw and become compressed, tight. It’s very difficult to have great posture when you’re feeling confined, sad or depressed.

Now imagine you are on the top of a hill with a view of the sea or mountains. Fill your lungs with fresh air as the gentle warm breeze brushes your skin.
You should feel elevated, light and open…. It’s difficult to have bad posture (unless you have inherent skeletal issues) when you are feeling on top of the world!

If your choice is to feel on top of the world then get moving and try a Pilates class! It will improve more than just your posture.”

Olga Tamara is the founder and principal trainer at Sydney’s Authentic Pilates studio

www.authenticpilatesstudio.com.au

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Sarah Carroll

CONTRIBUTOR

Sarah navigates health and fitness alongside a sinful sweet tooth and an unfortunate tendency to splash her savings online shopping, eating out or buying $10 cocktails at happy hour. With a love for yoga, animals and musical theatre, Sarah is rarely found without a peppermint-green tea in hand, tearing up over animal videos on Instagram.

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