Poor posture has become an epidemic with the increase in the use of technology, the compounding self-imposed stress, and selection of poor lifestyle habits. The net result has become modern day illness and conditions that are very much preventable and in many cases reversible. How you stand, sit and move your body on a daily basis is a window into the quality of your health. Your posture can give you tremendous insight as to why you may not be looking, feeling or moving your best.
Just like a road map, taking the time to analyze posture will show your current posture and with some help, a plan to get you to your new healthier posture.
What’s In A Posture Analysis?
Many health care practitioners who specialize in posture correction use sophisticated software such as:
- Posture Pro 8
- Posture Co
- Posture Zone
- Posture Screen Mobile
Most of these posture analyzing software programs are based on years of spinal and posture research.
Do-it-Yourself with an App
Want to check out your own posture? Download an app that is designed for the general public to analyze your own posture. Here are just a few:
- ACPP Core2
- Body Align Pro
- Posture Zone
- Posture Screen
Do-it-Yourself without an App
You don’t have to have an app to analyze your posture (although it helps). Many smartphones have an edit feature in the camera function or you can download the picture on your computer and use a photo editing software.
Here’s how to do-it-yourself:
Have someone help you. Attempting to take a picture of yourself in front of a mirror creates errors. Follow these steps to create your own posture analysis.
Take two pictures. One from the front and the second from the side (as seen in figure above). Do your best to stand in a relaxed position.
Keys to good posture pictures
- Be sure you are on flat, level ground – carpet or uneven flooring will skew your results.
- This one is important. Be sure you take a deep breath and exhale relaxing your body. Lower your chin to your chest and immediately bring the head back to what feels like a neutral position. Do this with your eyes closed. If you have poor balance or you feel like you are going to fall over, keep eyes open. A false posture will prevented with this method.
From the front look to see if the eyes are level, head is tilting, shoulders level, hips level and if the body is symmetrical from left to right. The best way to determine this is by placing a perpendicular line (from the floor) starting with a midpoint between each foot.
From the side draw a perpendicular line from the front of the ankle straight up passed your head. This line should intersect one inch from the middle of the ankle, then midpoint of the knee followed by the midpoint of the hip where the leg joins the pelvis. The last set of points are the shoulder, base of neck and just below the opening of the ear.
Download the picture into your computer or view it in your edit feature of your phone. The computer will allow you to draw lines, measure and calculate angles.
Congratulations, you now have your very own posture analysis!
***If you start a posture correction regime or program, it’s a good idea to retake a picture every 30-45 days. Retakes show how your posture is changing!