Having only two legs can be hard work sometimes. The reason is the same as why we produce tripods with three legs and desk with four legs. Two legs are not as stable but do allow you to be more mobile.
The pay off is that we can walk, run, swim, climb, crawl, etc. However, that is not a problem if you have an ideal posture as that means you don’t have to work at all to stay upright. That is correct, there should be zero effort used to stand as the ideal human skeleton is perfectly balanced.
The trouble is, over the course of our lives, as we use our bodies, our posture worsens and our bodies begin to fall forward. This is because bones can go out of place in directions that they cannot self-correct. When this happens, our skeleton becomes crooked and off-balance. This makes our “righting mechanism” kick in, which automatically uses our muscles to keep us from falling over.
Since we fall forwards, the most balancing effort comes from muscles at the back of our neck, lower back, hamstrings, calves and under our feet. These are common areas of pain for many people as these muscles become over-worked, ache and develop knots (trigger points).
I have found that most common chronic pain, comes from muscles and joints working too hard, because of poor posture.
Most new injuries that “come out of the blue” are due to this stress building up over time and causing another bone to go out of place. The pain comes from the damage to the joint and the accompanying muscle spasm that tries to stabilize the area.
So, the cause of poor posture is; bones out of place that the body cannot self-correct because there are no muscles or combinations of muscles that can pull in the correct direction to move the bone back to neutral. The bone becomes misaligned and gravity makes the body collapse at that point. The muscles then work to counter-balance and “right” the body so you don’t fall over, but this leads to compensating symptoms which include tightness, pain, aching, stiffness, joint noises, weakness and more.
This near-constant physical stress is a drain on your resources, is tiring and causes potential damage to body systems since you are falling forwards onto your organs and compressing them. The longer this stress continues, the worse you get (even if the pain goes away temporarily). The key to resolving the issue properly, and not only helping eliminate your pain but also tackling the root of many other health problems, is your posture.
We have found that posture devices/braces, exercises, stretching, massage, movement drills, etc all can change posture, but not correct posture. All these methods do is encourage you to arch yourself straighter rather than return your posture back to ideal.
When done properly, the righting mechanism is not needed and your muscles relax all by themselves – no stretches needed. Anyone using these methods for a length of time will know that to be true.
The feeling you get when you get proper correction is a lack of feeling – that is because your body is in neutral, the receptors in your body are also at rest. Therefore, you don’t feel anything. It’s an awesome and odd feeling – especially if you have been suffering from chronic pain and discomfort.
When you correct the bones that are out of place in a direction that the body cannot self-correct, your body will stay upright with no effort. This is true posture correction.