Exercises for Great Posture

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One of the best-known stretching exercises is the cobra. Start by lying face down on the floor with legs together, toes pointing backwards, and one hand placed each side of your head with palms down. Slowly raise your shoulders, looking ahead or slightly upwards, until you feel the stretch in your lower back. Hold the pose for 20 seconds, relax and then repeat.

Pilates exercises are also effective in improving posture and build abdominal strength. These are exercises, designed by Joseph Pilates, to develop the body's core strength by stretching muscles, mobilizing the spine and building flexibility.

Pilates is particularly good for posture, because it doesn't only involve exercise, it also teaches body awareness and encourages you to pull your stomach in and pull your shoulders down. Once you have mastered the Pilates standing posture, you can extend it into a walking or running routine.

Frederick Matthias Alexander developed other ways of correcting bad posture. The Alexander Technique teaches people to order the body, so it responds to what it's told. It teaches new ways of sitting, standing, breathing and moving. All of these will affect the balance of the body and result in better posture.