Why Fashion Isn’t Always Flexible

by pilates32 on February 19, 2012

What is considered to look good, isn’t always the healthiest state to be in. The smoker who looks thin isn’t as healthy as he or she looks at first glance. Over time, good healthy living and a faithfulness to that lifestyle shines through. The same is for those who look after their posture, backs and spinal alignment. Taking the time to consider the future of your back, means that life is much more comfortable for you when others suffer from back pain.

But sticking to this isn’t easy when fashion and trends tell us something different. For women it is seen as attractive to have an excessive curvature in the lower lumbar spine. The pelvis tilts forward and the butt sticks out. You may think this is attractive for now, but give it time and you’ll think it painful and detrimental. Lack of flexibility is seen as fashionable? The same goes for the guy who over-trains his chest with too much bench press and develops a hunchback posture. The humerus (upper arm) begins to internally rotate to compensate for such a tight chest and lo and behold he has back problems accumulate in the near future.

The excessive forward tilt of the pelvis and arch in the lumbar spine is the characteristics of the postural type; lordosis. Lordosis puts strain on the lower back and is made worse by tight hip flexors, stretched weak abdominals and weak hamstrings. Sitting too much at a desk each day is a common cause, but it can also be caused by over training of certain muscles and the neglect of others. Progression of lordosis results in issues further up and down the body, such as shoulder or knee problems caused by internal rotation of major joints and bones. This is a common cause of major knee and shoulder injuries such as ligament tears.

lordosis1 Why Fashion Isnt Always Flexible

With corrective exercises such as Pilates, working alongside commitment and patience, lordosis can be amended and a neutral tilt redeemed. For some individuals, it is important to tailor workouts specifically to their posture need. Exercises that further tighten the lower back may not be necessary and objectives of a Pilates program may be to specifically solve a postural issue. For others, following an all round Pilates system which ensures all types of movement will strengthen the core as a whole and improve flexibility, mobility and pelvic placement. Pretty soon the pelvis will take an optimal position as well as providing a balance in the ratio of hip to gluteal and hamstring strength and flexibility. This may seem like a lot to take in, so in simple words, everything works better and more efficiently. This is what makes Pilates so effective.

Posture is something we all need to consider and include within our fitness and weight loss goals. It’s easy to compensate with a posture issue and ignore the root cause of a problem, hoping that it will go away with rest and adequate time. But no matter how much you rest, your posture is still far from optimal. Assessing your own posture isn’t too difficult and you can find resources online that can act as a guide when doing this. But if you are feeling a little out of alignment, why not start a Pilates program?

It may look good and it may seem fashionable, but it certainly isn’t flexible.

Take a look at some of our other posture articles that can help you on your journey to extraordinary.

The Problem isn’t your back it’s your hips

Battling back pain with Pilates

Solving the Posture Problem; Part one

Hope this helps

All the best

Ian

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