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‘Rest and Digest’ With These Posture Pole Exercises

By February 23, 2018 March 30th, 2020 No Comments

The purpose of a posture pole is two fold

Physically: posture pole exercises open up your shoulder and chest region. Most of what we do is in front of us, meaning we carry our head in front of our shoulders. As a result, our shoulders roll forward, caving our chest inward and rounding out our mid back. This places extra strain on the muscles holding up the head at the back of the spine; reducing your ability to take a proper, deep breath (go on, try it!). The posture pole helps you to passively undo that at the end of the day. Posture pole exercises also encourage proper belly breathing and relaxation of muscles.

Neurologically: having a forward head posture and rounded shoulders encourages your fight/flight response to activate. This sends a message to your brain that you need to be more alert and ‘stressed’. As a result, sleeping, healing and thinking logically become difficult. By opening up the chest, resetting shoulder position and bringing the head back over the shoulders, it sends a message to your brain to get back in to ‘rest and digest’ mode, ready for healing and sleeping.

Posture Pole Exercises

How to use a posture pole: Lay on your posture pole from head down the spine to your pelvis. Bend up your knees with your feet on the floor, and arms in the ‘cactus’ position – arms at 90 degree angle to your body with elbows bent as 90 degrees (you may not be able to achieve this with your arms/hands touching the ground. If so, bring your elbows down towards your body until they do touch the ground). Relax here for up to 15 minutes, although to begin with try it for 1-2 minutes, get up and see how you feel. If you are sore, stop. If not, keep going.

To enhance the benefits further, try meditating (with or without an app like Smiling Minds) while on the posture pole. This activity is best done just before you go to bed, to undo the day’s pressures of gravity and stress, and to prepare you for a better sleep – you’ll notice the difference.

Posture Pole Exercises for Power Posing

Social psychologist Amy Cuddy argues that “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can boost feelings of confidence, and might have an impact on our chances for success.

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