With Parkinson’s comes poor posture. The shoulders slump, the chin sticks out and the elbows and knees tend to bend slightly. This makes the following more difficult to do.
You can help slow down these changes.
Good posture needs to become a habit. Practice every day and as often as possible.
1 Wall Check
Stand with your back against a wall. Make sure your lower back shoulder blades are flat against the wall. Pull your head against the wall. Maintain this posture as you walk away from the wall. Find a wall in your home for example, on the way to the bathroom, kitchen, bedroom. Each time you pass this wall, stop and do a posture check. This will create a new habit for you.
2 Floor Check
Each morning when you wake lie on you back for 5 minutes. Prevent your head and neck from tipping back with just enough head support. Relax. Don’t press your shoulders or head into the bed. Let gravity stretch you. Sometimes a firm surface such as the floor is preferable.
3 Seated Check
Use a chair to check your posture. Whenever you sit in a chair make sure your shoulder blades touch the back of the chair. Hold the position for a few seconds. Do this at least 3 times whenever you sit down.
4 Seated Spinal Roll Exercise
When sitting, slump forward and let your head and arms hang to the floor. Slowly start rolling up. Begin from the lowest part of your spine and roll one vertebra at a time, with you head coming up last. Sit talk for several seconds, then repeat. (If you feel dizzy don’t continue this exercise.)
5 Prone Shoulder Lift
Lying face down on the floor, mat or bed, arms by your side. Pull your shoulder blades together and gently lift. The keep the head and neck in a straight line whilst lifting. The stomach is sucked in and do not lift using your lower back.
6 Neck Straightening
Straighten your neck by gently pulling your chin in. Make sure not to tilt your head up or down. Hold this position for 5 seconds, relax, repeat. This exercise can be done sitting or standing as many times during the day as possible.
Call our Infoline on 1800 644 189 to talk with our Exercise Physiologist Alyson about more exercise and posture work you can do.
This content is provided for information purposes only and do not represent advice. Always consult your doctor before commencing an exercise program.
This content is based on original material produced by Parkinson Canada