Breathing to fix posture?

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Dub
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Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Dub » Wed May 16, 2012 11:35 am

Bret Contreras covered a very interesting new study on his blog:

The main point the research found out was that respitatory exercises might actually be useful to correcting posture.
  • It was a randomized controlled study that lasted about 4 weeks
  • The study had 26 swimmers as participants. The swimmers were divided into a control group and exercise group, of course.
  • The exercise group did respitatory-muscle exercises for 10 minutes three times a week
  • Before the test and after four weeks they measured three things: Spinal curvature(measured with SpinalMouse, a computer-aided measuring device), trunk-muscle strength(with Isoforce) and pulmonary function(with Autospiro). Following muscles were mentioned as "trunk-muscles": Rectus Abdominis, Transversus abdominis, Longissimus muscle and multifidus muscle. Trunk-muscle exercise was the extension and flexion of the trunk while sitting (90 degree flexion from hip and knees)
  • As the respitarory exercise the reasearch used the spirotiger -device.
  • The results were pretty nice: The angle of the thoracic spine decreased by 13%(5.5 degrees) and Lumbar spine by 17% (3.1 degrees. Also the pulmonary function improved and trunk flexion strength improved by 10%
To put it extremely simply: Breathing exercises did actually reduce spinal angles, and could possibly be used in fighting thoracic kyphosis and lumbar lordosis. And it had improvement on core strenght also. The change in spinal curvature could become from the respitatory exercises forcing the ribcage to expand and stretch the thoracic. Also the increase in the intra-abdominal pressure could be responsible for the changes in the lumbar spine. That's very interesting. Increased spinal curvature is not cool, and could cause shoulder issues and lower back pain. This subject needs more studies and possible larger reasearches also, it could be very useful in the future in means of correcting posture.

Your thoughts on the subject? Below is the downloadable PDF-link about the reasearch. Check Bret Contreras's blog also for conclusions and Bret's personal thoughts.
http://posturalrestoration.com/media/pd ... vature.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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josh60
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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by josh60 » Thu May 17, 2012 4:56 am

Dub wrote:Your thoughts on the subject?
My first thought was that they followed your signature advice... Seems too good to be true. Changing spine curvature by "... exercised for 10 minutes thrice a week for 4 weeks" does not sit well with what I know about spine curvature, but then again, I'm not really educated in this area.

After having a look at the research article I still think it's quite amazing, but I noticed that the participants are very young, sixteen YO or so, so maybe their spines are still flexible enough to show these changes. Anyway, just to be on the safe side I'm starting to blowup some balloons right now :)

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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Stefan 93 » Sun May 27, 2012 10:22 am

It might not be too good to be true.
When our body doesn't try to survive (so all the time), the next thing it wants is to have enough oxygen. Our left lung is smaller than the right one, so our body twists so it can take more air. And if we don't breath with our diaphragm, we use more of our upper parts of lungs and I guess if our spines are more S-shaped (like in their cases) more air can be sucked in.
And when we learn to breath the right way with moving only our stomach, all of those corrections can be thrown away... The only problem is that after so much time in the wrong position, spine needs some time to return to normal.
I apologize to everyone I've enraged. I'll try to correct myself.

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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Jungledoc » Mon May 28, 2012 7:15 am

Stefan 93 wrote:It might not be too good to be true.
When our body doesn't try to survive (so all the time), the next thing it wants is to have enough oxygen. Our left lung is smaller than the right one, so our body twists so it can take more air. And if we don't breath with our diaphragm, we use more of our upper parts of lungs and I guess if our spines are more S-shaped (like in their cases) more air can be sucked in.
And when we learn to breath the right way with moving only our stomach, all of those corrections can be thrown away... The only problem is that after so much time in the wrong position, spine needs some time to return to normal.
This is really pretty confused. Where would I start?
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter.--Francis Chan

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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Performance » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:38 pm

Dub wrote:To put it extremely simply: Breathing exercises did actually reduce spinal angles, and could possibly be used in fighting thoracic kyphosis and lumbar lordosis.
I wouldn't look too much into it.

Heavy squatting surely has to be one of the most damaging practices to increasing both the thoracic and lumbar spine angles.

Your not going to give up squatting.

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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Dub » Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:49 pm

Performance wrote: I wouldn't look too much into it.
Heavy squatting surely has to be one of the most damaging practices to increasing both the thoracic and lumbar spine angles.
Your not going to give up squatting.
What's all this now? Squatting bad for posture? I have actually never heard that before, can you give any references? Even if it does do that, I wouldn't give up squatting. I would just keep on rowing.
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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by emil3m » Sun Jul 08, 2012 1:27 am

Dub wrote:I would just keep on rowing.
Do you prefer the straight back variation or the regular row? (for seated cable rows that is)
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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by robertscott » Sun Jul 08, 2012 6:05 am

straight back

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Re: Breathing to fix posture?

Post by Dub » Sun Jul 08, 2012 6:12 am

emil3m wrote:Do you prefer the straight back variation or the regular row? (for seated cable rows that is)
I always use free weights. So the seated is out of question. Plus, every row should be straight back (or atleast good posture).
BB Rows from floor(deadstop), Bent-over BB rows (different grips; wide/narrow), DB Rows (either standing or half-kneeling/Kroc-rows or regular DB rows), Inverted rows, pull-ups. You name it. Any row that works the back muscles.
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