The journey of addressing poor posture often begins with understanding why the posture was lost in the first place. For many, posture is something that is a purely physical thing; if your posture is poor, something is simply where it is not supposed to be. This may be so, but there are many reasons a person may experience poor posture, and some of them may surprise you.
I’ve let my body go
This is something you hear quite often when people have stopped engaging their body in positive physical challenges. This is something that happens often and can often be addressed by simply ‘getting back to it’. For us at Body Heal, it is always important to dive deeper into why the body was ‘let go’ to begin with. Was there an injury? Was working out boring? Was the person not able to achieve their goals? If we can agree that no one decides to stop exercising because they want to go to pot, then something happened. Some common things we find is injury in the form of inflammation, bursitis, muscle soreness, low back pain, neck tension, headaches, knee pain, plantar fasciitis, among others, force them to rest and they cannot get their groove back. If this is the case, we can usually look to form, or to threshold to fix the problem. People either go too hard, or they go about it the wrong way.
I’m lost in my body
This second one has more to do with a term we like to call embodiment. Whether its movement intelligence, or emotional intelligence, having a sense of what is going on below your neck is not a typical practice for most. In other words, many people who struggle with poor posture also struggle with poor embodiment. Is it really possible for poor embodiment to emerge as a sciatic issue, shoulder pain, neck tension, or chronic headaches? Not only can be the case, but the pursuit of good embodiment is often the necessary cure. Improving embodiment can look many different ways, but manual therapy under the guidance of a skilled practitioner can begin re-relating you with your body and begin that journey of re-discovery.
I hide in my body
This last category is the most difficult to uncover and the most delicate to work with. Our postures not only respond to physical demands and embodied awareness, but also our personal journey as humans. Sadly, this journey can often be route with trauma. For those whom trauma has imprinted strongly enough into their conscious or subconscious awareness, their posture will communicate a need they may be unable to communicate verbally. Postures can show timidity, compliance, defiance, aggravation, low self-worth, or gullibility, to name just a few. These habits, of course, are natural mechanisms of survival, but nonetheless, can be a root cause in patterns that lead to the everyday low back pain, knee aggravation, shoulder inflammation, or ankle pain. Manageable amounts of trauma can certainty be integrated with just having space and permission to do the work, but for many, the guidance of a skilled counsellor is necessary.
At Body Heal, where we regularly work both with pain and posture, we have a unique opportunity to equip each client with the necessary tools to live in a body they love. If you would like to learn more, check out more about what we do at: www.bodyhealtherapy.com/faq