Analyze Your Alignment & Correct Your Posture
Strip down to a pair of shorts and have a friend take to full-body photos, one from the front and one from the side. Keeping your muscles relaxed, stand as tall as you can, with your feet hip width apart. Now analyze your photos to diagnose your posture problems.
Diagnosis: HUNCHED BACK
Your chest is concave and your shoulders are rounded forward.
WHERE PAIN STRIKES: Neck, shoulders, or back
THE PROBLEM: Poor upper-back mobility
FIX IT: Lie face up on a foam roller that is placed at about your mid-back, perpendicular to your spine. Place your hands behind your head and arch your upper back over the roller 5 times. Next, adjust the roller and repeat on different portions of your upper back.
THE PROBLEM: Weak muscles in your back
FIX IT: Perform the prone cobra.
Lie facedown with your arms at your sides, palms down. Lift your head, chest and hands slightly off the floor, and squeeze your shoulder blades together while keeping your chin tucked. Hold for 5 seconds; do 2-3 sets of 12 reps daily.
Diagnosis: ANTERIOR PELVIC TILT
Your lower abdomen protrudes forward and your lower back is arched.
WHERE PAIN STRIKES: Lower back (because of the more pronounced arch in your lumbar spine). The tilt also pushes your belly out, even if you may not have an ounce of belly fat.
THE PROBLEM: Tight hip flexors
FIX IT: Kneel with your right knee on the floor and your left foot flat on the floor in front of you. Tighten your right gluteal muscles until you feel the front of your right hip stretching comfortably. Reach upward with your right arm and stretch back and to the left. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat.
THE PROBLEM: Weak glutes
The hip raise is your solution. Lie on your back with your knees bent to about 90 degrees. Squeeze your glutes and push your hips up until your body is straight from knees to shoulders. Hold for 5 seconds. Complete 2-3 sets of 12 reps daily.
Source: Men's Health - Continuation in tomorrow's health tip.