The Best Stretch To Fix Your Posture

personal trainer keith hansen displaying poor posture while hunched over a computer

You spend too much time on the computer.

It starts at 8 a.m. when you go to work and ends at 10 p.m. when you get off of Facebook/Reddit/Youtube to rest for a repeat performance the next day.

Since college this routine has messed up your body. You probably haven’t made time to work out, and you sure as hell don’t stretch.

Sitting is wrecking your body.

Here is a quick fix you can do anywhere, anytime to undo the damage.

Combine this stretch with a posture correction exercise, a foam rolling routine, and you will be well on your way to perfect posture.

The Bow

This stretch can be a little awkward at first; it’s like doing a super limbo, but there is no better stretch for undoing all of your slouching.

All you need is your body and maybe something to lean over such as the back of a couch or a bench.

How It’s Done

We call it a bow stretch because your body curves like an English longbow.

Stretch your hands overhead, palms forward, and start arching your entire body back. From the side your body will curve just like a bow.

start position of standing bow stretch for posture

\End position of standing bow stretch for posture

It is important that you drop your jaw as much as possible and breath through your mouth & into your belly during the stretch.

If the stretch is particularly uncomfortable or the balance is challenging you can lean over a couch, bench, or foamroller.

 

bow stretch for posture using a foam roller for support

bow stretch for posture using a bench for support

Hold for 3-5 big breaths and then stand back up and shake it out. Repeat once.

Do this routine in the morning, at lunch, after work, and before bed.

Why it works

Take a second to visualize what you look like slouched over a keyboard. Now actually slouch over your keyboard. Now stand and perform the bow stretch.

Do you see why the bow works? It is the polar opposite of the hunched, keyboard-warrior position.

The muscles wreaking the most havoc on your posture are your pecs and lats. This stretch hits both of those large muscle groups at once to reduce tightness. It also does nice things to your hip flexors.

Bonus Stretches:

-Wall Stretch for Pecs

This pec stretch can really be done anywhere.

  1. Position your body inside of a door frame or at the corner of a wall
  2. Raise your arm like you are waving hello. 90 degrees in the elbow, 90 at the arm pit, palm forward
  3. Place your elbow & forearm on the frame or wall
  4. Push your body forward and turn away from the arm to intensify the stretch
  5. Hold for 3-5 deep breaths
  6. Switch arms
  7. Repeat 1-5

beginning position of wall pec stretch

End position of wall pec stretch

-TRX Lat Stretch

I don’t have a sexy name for this stretch, but that doesn’t matter because this stretch is going to do wonders for you.

It doesn’t have to be done with a TRX, it could be a squat rack, but it works best with one. Anything you that will support your weight, is easily grabbable, and is at chest height or higher will work.

  1. Grab your anchor point one-handed with thumb up(TRX handle in our example)
  2. Sit down and back
  3. Rotate your body into that arm and you will feel the stretch down that entire side of your torso
  4. Hold for 3-5 breaths
  5. Switch arms
  6. Repeat 1-4

Beginning position of TRX lat stretch

Middle position of TRX lat stretch

End position of TRX lat stretch

 

beginning position of lat stretch using a barbell and squat rack

middle position of lat stretch using a barbell and squat rack

end position of lat stretch using a barbell and squat rack