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How Important is Posture?

Is Posture really that important? Through the years you may have heard the phrase “sit up straight!” or “Don’t hunch over!” Maintaining healthy posture is significant to each one’s body and health, but why?

In order to maintain a fit and strong spine, it begins with posture. If you have poor posture, structures in the spine such as disks, joints, blood vessels, and nerves can over time effect the anatomical position of the spine which can cause bouts of stress, and strain to muscles. A good habit of proper posture can eliminate possible harm to the spinal curvature and reduce any forthcoming muscle pain and tiredness.

Hurst Chiropractor Spine

Taught to have good posture, especially at a young age can create a long lasting habit for overall health. Maintaining the body’s natural curve, good posture starts with keeping each portion of the body in placement with bordering parts of the body. Chiropractors can examine a standing posture and help achieve ways to correct and give ideas to personal goals to strive for.

Not only is it important to maintain posture standing, it is important to sustain proper posture while sitting, especially for those who sit for long periods during the day. Stretching every hour when sitting for extended periods of time can provide a great deal of wealth to a healthy spine. Apart from sitting on a regular chair, oftentimes a stool, or a stability ball is a wonderful substitute to improve posture.

Let a chiropractor help you or someone you know with proper posture. Dr. James Taylor will work with you to help optimize your health, work to align the spine and give ideas to help you feel better, and be better. Contact Aspire Chiropractic TODAY!! You can reach us at 817-282-4700. We are proud to serve the Northeast Tarrant and Mid-Cities communities.

Photo Credit: http://www.fitbodyhq.com/lifestyle/posture/

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Super Tough No Crunch Six-Pack Abs Workout – GymGuider.com


Super Tough No Crunch Six-Pack Abs Workout

    Here are 4 specific ab target exercises for you, without the burn and hassle of crunches! These articles will sculpt, define and tone the perfect set of abs with some extra added fun. Not only can you perform these exercises at the gym, but they are also ready for you at home.

    So, if you are not confident or don’t feel comfortable yet, let these exercises train and help you become familiar with your body weight and engage body movements.

    All you have to do is try one set of each exercise, and when comfortable, modify and create the perfect workout that works for you! Complete your sets three times per week and you will notice not only your strength and posture improving, but your figure shaping.

    Also you will need to have a diet that suits your overall target physique, combined with these exercises, and you are on your way to that six pack ab sculpture.

    Related article: No Equipment 7 Minute Abs & Core Workout


    How to:

    • Start by lying on your back, with your legs straight and arms extended overhead.
    • Contract your core and exhale as you hinge forward from the hips and lift your legs to create a “V” with your body.
    • Hold for one count, then inhale as you slowly return to the start.
    • Aim for doing 20 to 25 of these, but it’s ok if you can’t.

    Another option: Get into the “V” position and hold it for as long as you can instead of doing reps.

    Related article: 4 Push Ups To A Powerful Looking Physique

    Super Stability Ball Plank:

    How to:

    • Rest your forearms on a stability ball and extend your legs to rest your feet on another ball behind you.
    • Hold here for as long as you can — it won’t be long! — before bringing your feet and knees back to the ground.
    • Perform this exercise close to the beginning of your workout, before your abdominals become fatigued.

    Tip: Not ready for this advanced move? Perform a plank with your forearms on the ball and feet on the ground.

    Related article: Stability Ball Workout For Strong Core Abs & Legs

    V-Up to Pressdown

    How to:

    • Lie face up, with your arms and legs outstretched.
    • In one motion, sit straight up, place your hands on the ground beside your thighs, and press through your palms to lift your glutes off the mat.
    • Curl your upper body to bring your head towards your legs – the motion may be small, depending on your ability.
    • Lower your butt back to the floor and reverse.
    • Try 10 to 15 reps!

    Tip: Your heels should remain on the ground from beginning to end. Make it easier by using a slower curling motion to lift your upper body from the ground. Focus on raising one vertebrae at a time until your torso is vertical.

    Related article: Yoga and Stretching Exercises & Correct Form

    Stability-Ball V-Up

    How to:

    • Hold a stability ball and lie on your back, with your legs straight and arms extended overhead.
    • Raise your torso and legs off the floor at the same time, and pass the ball from your hands to between your shins.
    • Slowly reverse, lowering back to the floor one vertebrae at a time.
    • Repeat, passing the ball from your shins to your hands, to complete one rep.
    • 10 to 15 reps in total.

    Tip: The larger the ball, the harder it will be to hold on to, and the more difficult the exercise will be.

    The secret is out: you too can achieve a sexy six-pack ABS


    The secret is out: you too can achieve a sexy six-pack ABS

    The secret is out: you too can achieve a sexy six-pack ABS





    17 Back Muscles That Cause the MOST Back Pain (and how to get RELIEF!)



    17 Back Muscles That Cause the Most Back Pain (and how to get relief!)








    Back pain is one of the top reasons for missed work and second only to upper-respiratory infections for causing doctor visits.
    Most of the time, back muscle pain is diagnosed then “treated” with little more than a prescription of rest, painkillers and muscle relaxants.
    Follow this advice and you’re taking one more step down the path to more serious back pain – and possibly doctor-recommended back surgery to deal with it.
    And it’s all because you’ve never been told why you have back muscle pain – or how to get lasting relief by treating the cause rather than the symptoms.
    That all ends today as we pull back the covers and see exactly what is going on… why your back hurts… which muscles are behind your back pain… and most importantly, what you can do about it (besides taking more pain pills).

    Why your back muscles hurt

    This may sound suspiciously like common sense, but your back muscles hurt when you pull them too far or place them under too much strain.
    But contrary to common misperception, the underlying cause of this back muscle pain is notpoor posture, how much you exercise or even your genetic history.
    Instead, poor posture can be strong evidence of the real cause. Exercise of the wrong kind can make it worse (but the right kind can relieve your pain). And the good news is you cando something about this underlying cause of back pain – regardless of your genetics.
    The root cause of virtually all non-trauma related back muscle pain – and a major contributor to many back conditions like herniated discs – are muscle imbalances.
    One way to visualize muscle imbalances and how they cause back pain is to think of your car. If the wheels are out of alignment, the tires will wear unevenly, making them more susceptible to an early blowout.
    Imbalanced muscles do the same thing to your back. Muscle pain results when one muscle or group of muscles overpowers an opposing set of muscles that get stretched out of shape.
    And here’s the kicker… many of the muscles affecting your back pain aren’t in your back!
    For example, sitting all day long leads to weak abs, glutes, and hamstrings which go unused much of the day. In the meanwhile, your hip flexors, quadriceps and lumbar muscles remain tight to keep you in an upright position.
    Over time, this imbalance between the muscles of your lower back, legs and stomach can cause severe lower back muscle pain – even when you’re not sitting down.
    This video explains how muscle imbalances affect your pain, and how to fix them. 

    So which muscles are behind your back pain? Let’s take a quick look at the four most common postural dysfunctions behind nearly all back pain… and the muscles behind those dysfunctions.

    Forward head and neck

    If you’re wondering what muscles cause neck pain, these are some of the culprits. Forward head posture and shoulders rounded forward are common signs of this set of muscle imbalances.
    For every inch your head moves forward out of alignment from your shoulders, your neck effectively carries an additional ten pounds of weight. Forward head and neck postural dysfunction is a frequent cause of neck and upper back pain, not to mention headaches, shoulder pain and more.

    Tight muscles:

    Anterior deltoid


    Latissimus dorsi

    Weak muscles:

    Middle trapezius

    Lower trapezius


    Teres minor

    Forward tipped pelvis

    By far the most common postural dysfunction we see, a forward tipped pelvis is extremely common among office workers, truck drivers and others who spend a large portion of each day sitting.
    A forward tipped pelvis is also the most common cause of lower back muscle pain. Let’s take a look at muscles that cause lower back pain.

    Tight muscles:


    Hip flexors


    Weak muscles:




    Backward tipped pelvis

    The opposite of a forward tipped pelvis, a backward tipped pelvis is the least common of the four primary postural dysfunctions behind back muscle pain. It’s most frequently found in the older population.

    Tight muscles:


    Upper abdominal



    Weak muscles:

    Thoracic erector spinae

    Hip flexors


    High hip

    A misaligned pelvis (one side higher than the other) is often related to back pain or restriction in movement that affects one side of your body more than the other. Here are some of the muscles that cause hip pain when they’re too tight or weak.

    Tight muscles:

    Quadratus lumborum



    Weak muscles:



    Back muscle pain relief in two simple steps

    You may have one, two or even three different postural dysfunctions. Identifying which postural dysfunction(s) you have will give you the insight you need to eliminate the muscle imbalances behind your back pain using muscle balance therapy.
    Don’t let the formal name throw you off, though. The concept is actually very simple:
    1) Identify which muscles are weak and strengthen them through targeted exercise
    2) Identify which muscles are tight and relieve the tightness through targeted stretching.
    Once the tight muscles have relaxed and weak muscles have been strengthened enough to carry their normal load, your body will naturally return to a neutral posture — relieving back muscle pain and most other back pain, neck pain and sciatica pain in the process.
    But there is a catch: you must accurately identify the muscle imbalances you have and use the correct stretches and exercises or you may accidentally strengthen or stretch the wrong muscles, leaving you in pain longer.


    Back Pain Facts & Statistics. American Chiropractic Association. 2012.


    Jesse Cannone, CFT, CPRS, MFT
    Jesse is the co-founder and visionary CEO of The Healthy Back Institute®, the world-leading source of natural back pain solutions. His mission as a former back pain sufferer is to help others live pain free without surgery and pharmaceuticals.

    Gluteal and Psoas Relationship for Yogis – Yoganatomy


    Gluteal and Psoas Relationship for Yogis


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    Is there a relationship between psoas and the gluteals?

    There is a pattern that has shown itself to me over the last few months. I don’t think that this pattern is a result of practice but probably an underlying pattern that already existed. As often happens, regular practice can uncover any number of problems or imbalances in our body. Hopefully the practice helps to create balance and “fix” them.

    The pattern that I’m referring to in this article can show itself in a number of different ways. Unfortunately, that means I have to talk around it for a bit. The way the pattern has shown itself to me as of late, points in the direction of the interrelationship between tight deep external rotators (piriformis for instance), the deep gluteus minimus and medius, and a tight iliopsoas. I discuss the piriformis/psoas relationship to the SI joint in Functional Anatomy of Yoga.

    Here’s how the pattern has been presenting itself to me. The student has occasional or chronic lower back or SI joint pain on one side maybe even knee pain on the same side. Depending on the practitioner and their level of practice I have also observed difficulty putting their leg behind their head. It’s also possible that the student has a tendency to over tighten their buttocks in upward facing dog, especially on the affected side.

    All of these parts and pieces add up to a somewhat dysfunctional hip joint. By dysfunctional I mean, not generally happy. The hip is possibly showing painin certain movements or postures and even outside of practice in daily life.

    As I said I’ve seen a spat of this recently. I just assume that if something keeps showing up in front of me, either I’m being a hammer and only seeing nails or there’s something worth writing about. I’m sure there are a few of you out there who will benefit from a little deconstruction of the situation even if it doesn’t fit you or a student in exactly the same way.

    I have written about some aspects of this before in other places. The psoas article that’s been up for years now is always worth a read; I’ve also written about squeezing the buttocks in up dog. Even sit bone pain or knee problemscould be included as possible related issues.

    In many of these students I have found that the two sides of their pelvis are not even, relative to one another. Usually one side of their pelvis has an anterior rotation relative to the other. An anterior tilt is where one side has rotated down and forward. It is usually (there are always exceptions) the one that has the stronger anterior tilt that complains. There are a number of muscles that can contribute to this such as:

    I am starting to think that this difference between the sides of the pelvis may be the common factor in the pattern that I’m seeing regardless of the symptoms that may be appearing. As of late, the symptom has just seemed to revolve mostly around tight gluteals and a tight iliopsoas.

    How Does the Pelvis Get Like This?

    There are many ways in which this can happen, too many to list them all, but sometimes it’s an anatomical difference in size between the right and left side of the pelvis, or an anatomically longer leg. We’ve already mentioned that the tension of various muscles can create this. A fall onto your bottom, or more specifically onto your sit bone can be the culprit. As I mentioned in a recent article, scoliosis can create an imbalance in the pelvis as well.

    Iliopsoas MuscleI would suggest that the practice of yoga by itself is unlikely to cause this to happen. I say this because the practice of postures is usually balanced in terms of stretching and strengthening tissues as well as in terms of front/back and left/right. Some practices however could lead to furthering an imbalance if it already exists.

    It is also possible that an injurysustained while practicing could, over a period of time, lead to an imbalance. For instance a torn hamstring could either create compensations, or a change in balance between the front and the back of the pelvis that other muscles then tighten around.

    How To Check Your Pelvis

    If you do have any of the mentioned issues going on then it might be worth having someone check your pelvis to see if an imbalance might be part of your problem. If you’re curious whether or not there is a difference between the sides of someone’s pelvis here’s how you would check someone else’s pelvis.

    Have them stand in front of you while you kneel down and place your thumbs on their ASIS. That’s the bump on the front of your pelvis, sometimes known in yoga as hip points. They can be difficult to find on some people so it may be helpful to have them fold just slightly at their waist to soften some of the hip flexors. Just make sure you have them stand up straight after you’ve located them. Another way would be to have them find their ASIS for you.

    You’ll also want to slide your finger up from just below the ASIS so that you hit the bottom of it on both sides with both thumbs. This helps you to feel that you’re in the same spot on both sides.asis yoga anatomy

    Most people will have at least a very slight difference in the height of these relative to one another. If it’s a significant difference then it’s more likely to be a component of the problem.

    To confirm that one side is actually rotated, you should also check the PSIS, which can be even more difficult to find. This one is the bump you feel on the back of your pelvis on either side of your sacrum. It may be helpful to have the person you’re checking find them for you so you can then place your thumbs on them once again, while you note if one is higher or lower than the other. The best way to find it yourself is to slide all of your fingertips over the approximate area where you think it should be. Make circular motion and see if you can find it.

    If you found that their left ASIS was lower than the right and the PSIS was higher on the left compared to the right, then this might lead us to conclude that the left side is tilted forward in an anterior tilt. In other words lower ASIS and higher PSIS on the same side could be indicating that that side of the pelvis is tilted forward.

    There are certainly more sophisticated ways of confirming these imbalances; this is just the simplest way of doing it. More importantly than me trying to teach you how to interpret these differences in a newsletter is noting the differences between right and left side. Then note any differences you find in the student’s postures around the pelvis. Also the “symptoms” that you find in the student. Is there a correlation?

    Understanding the Implications

    Since I went with the simpler and more common one side tilted down and forward, a couple of things go along with this. It’s hard to say which comes first. If the pelvis is tilted down and forward (anterior tilt) on one side, we would expect to find that muscles that attach to the front of the pelvis, such as the adductors, rectus femoris (a quadriceps), and the iliopsoas might be short and tight.

    This could mean that at the back of the pelvis we find that the hamstrings are longer than they should be, maybe even complaining with some pain at the sit bone. We often think long is good but what we really mean by “good” is that there is flexibility to get long when needed, not that the muscle is in a constant state of being stretched.

    In addition to the hamstring getting long, it also means the area above the pelvis on this same side is usually short and compressed. The quadratus lumborum is the typical muscle people would suspect to be short here and it very well could be, but even the more simple paraspinal muscles or “erector spinae” muscles may complain and feel tight, or painful due to their constant state of being short.

    psis yoga anatomyWith this pelvic difference it wouldn’t be unreasonable that the gluteals are also not particularly happy. If this is also the case then we might see that the student has a hard time externally rotating their thigh at the hip joint. Perhaps not an issue for students trying to do a simple janu sirsasana, but maybe it shows itself as knee pain in lotus or as a restriction for some students trying to get a leg behind their head.

    What we want to do is factor in what we’ve found in terms of the balance of the pelvis. Then we want to mix in what the student describes, or rather what areas of their body are feeling tension or even pain. Based on the coming together of these there are a number of things we might try to change in the practice or we might even add specific poses to help bring length to some of those shortened tissues.

    On the Mat

    Quadratus Lumborum MuscleContinuing to assume an anterior tilt on one side we will almost always want to bring length into the front of the hip and lengthen the hip flexors. This can be anything from a simple lunge to a supta virasana. Feel free to use any other postures that you know which put length into these tissues.

    If the gluteals and lower back are involved then make sure the student isn’t over tightening their buttocks in their up dog or other back bending type postures, which may lead to more tension in these tissues. Maybe also encourage postures that lengthen these tissues such as pigeon or us the lotuspreps that I describe in my youtube video.


    When working with either of the two scenarios above, also make sure that the lower back doesn’t get compressed. Find ways, with your hands or props to keep space in the lower back while both stretching the hip flexors and helping to shut off the gluteals. Sometimes shutting off the gluteals shuts everything off and the lower back can get over compressed. For instance in up dog, make sure they are also engaging and pressing the legs into the floor.

    Be willing to explore a bit with your students and try things out. You can often bring awareness to certain patterns that the student has and this can take them further into exploring their own awareness of what they are doing and how they are doing it. This is always good!

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    About David Keil

    This website is simply about delivering yoga anatomy to the yoga community in a simple and understandable way. It has always been about you, the reader, understanding the complexity and diversity of our own humanness as well as our anatomy.

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    1. Madina

      Hi there,

      Great article! Just wanted to ask you whether you noticed in such students the following:

      – in the side that is lower poses with inner rotation of thigh work easier (triang mukha eka pada paschimattanasana) and on the opposite side (higger) not?

      – the shouleder on the opposite side of lower hip more stiff in outer rotation so that grounding of the elbow in pincha is hard?

      Thanks again for this article. If you are interested, I have worked out some stretches for psoas and quadratus lumborum that I could share.


      1. post

        Hi Madina,
        Yes, sometimes easier inner rotation of the thigh on the same side. I haven’t noticed the shoulder part but I’ll pay attention now that you mention it. If you have some stretches that you think would be helpful, please post them here. Try to keep it simple though!

        1. Susan

          Hi David and Madina
          Yes! I wondered the same thing as Madina’s comment about the opposite shoulder being tight in outward rotation. I have noticed that problem and the connections makes a lot of sense to me now. I would be interested in reading stretching suggestions.
          Thanks, Sue

    2. Jess Glenny

      This is me! In my case due to scoliosis. I’ve been working with this for about a year now – using a lot of stretches for left piriformis, QL and psoas. Since the scoliosis is genetic not functional, this manages the situation rather than ‘fixes’ it. Madina, I’d be interested to know your QL stretches.

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