As a child growing up, your parents or grandparents may have commented on your posture telling you to “stand up straight,” “don’t slouch,” or “shoulders back!”
Well, that’s half right...neutral body alignment is more than just having good posture.
Neutral body alignment is the natural position of the spine when all 3 curves of the spine—cervical (neck), thoracic (middle) and lumbar (lower)—are present and in good alignment. Intentionally and mindfully holding your body in this way allows you to move safer and smarter; it promotes ease and may reduce pain, tightness and tension in the larger muscle groups while also decreasing your chance of injury during sitting, standing, working and exercising.
Everyday practice of keeping neutral body alignment (or in your pilates practice you may often hear the term “Neutral Spine”) not only promotes good body mechanics and reduces our chance of injury, however. It also encourages optimal functioning of your body’s major systems, helps with digestion and recent studies have shown that moving with neutral spine has positive effects on the immune system and how you fight disease.
Over time, this practice of checking and being in tune with our natural alignment transcends solely physical health and engages us in a truly holistic experience of health by deepening the connection between the body, the mind and the spirit.
Anita Morgan Rigo Therapeutic Massage Therapist at Boketto Wellness