Meribeth Dayme Health Care Mind your Posture
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Meribeth Dayme Health Care Mind your Posture

Published by: Shabir Ahmad (3)
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Do you spend a lot of time sitting in a chair? Are you a postural slob when talking on the phone? Does your backache at the end of the day? Or even before? Do you expect the back of the chair to support you? Do your shoulders and neck hurt by lunchtime? Do think that your posture and your general health are unrelated? Do others ask you to speak up because you are mumbling? Did you know that clarity of voice and posture are related? Are you aware of how important posture is to your singing voice? Then maybe its time to… Mind your posture Here’s how…

1. Place both feet firmly on the floor and feel as if they are super-glued. Being grounded is important.

2. Imagine that the crown (not the centre) of your head is reaching as high as possible. You will feel as if the back of your neck is stretching and getting longer. Make sure you do not tilt your chin up or down—it is just a passenger. You can also imagine that your head is being supported or pushed up from the middle of your upper back. You can help yourself by either placing a hand just above your head and reaching for it or by grabbing the nape of your neck and pulling upwards. You will feel your spine begin to stretch. Not only will your spine begin to lengthen, your tummy will begin to flatten.

3. Make sure your knees are gently loose. Notice your knees. Are they loose or locked. Braced or locked knees tend to have a knock on effect of causing the lower back to arch and the bum to stick out.

4. Make sure you are balanced. Take a moment to feel whether your weight is balanced towards your toes or your heels. Gently shift your weight forwards and backwards while remembering that your feet are super-glued to the floor so you will not fall. Find a new centre. Ideally the weight is equally balanced between the ball of the foot and the heel. A good way of checking balance is by rising on your toes. Ideally you will be able to rise by pushing through the feet only with no other adjustments in weight shift or hips, head, etc. You can see this by observing yourself in a mirror or video. You must be turned sideways to see it. Most people are stunned to find they have been walking around for years in a most unbalanced manner.

5. The only difference in sitting and standing is that your knees are bent. The integrity of the whole spine from head to tail is still important.

If you wish to change your balance, remember the following:

1. Your muscles have learned a new pattern and will let you know that this is different by making you feel as if it is very strange. However, check yourself in the mirror or with a video camera to see that you do not look as weird as you feel. Your muscles will soon get the new message and be happy with it. We are dynamic beings full of vibrating atoms that can adjust to our desires and needs. While you may feel different muscles working, the body does not enjoy being rigid or fixed. Your posture and balance are dynamic and constantly readjusting to keep you from being gravity prone.

2. Place post-it notes to remind you to be taller and wider, rather than shorter and shrunken at the end of the day.

3. Particularly be aware of how you hold your phone. Do you always want to have a head that tilts towards the ‘phone’ side? And, how are you sitting??

4. Relaxing is a popular word for physical collapse. Note that you will not want to be in a state of collapse during an important meeting. What is laid back to you may look like disinterest to some one else.

5. Changing your physical alignment can help you-- • live a healthier life with less chance of injury • sing better • speak better • play sports more easily • breathe better • give you a more confident image

Above all: Remember that how you perceive yourself and how others see you can be very different.

Shabir Ahmad - About the Author:

Meribeth Dayme, PhD, an internationally respected author, teacher of singing and vocal pedagogy (vocal warm up exercises), and founder of CoreSinging™. For many years she sought an approach to singing that was universal rather than oriented toward a specific genre or style. CoreSinging™ is the result of that search. The testimonials attest to the tremendous success of the approach, the ease of use, and the practicality of the techniques.

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