In speaking to people about what benefits they get out of hooping one of the most common replies is improved posture. We have all been told many times that good posture is important, but there are a number of benefits of good posture that many people are unaware of. In this post you will discover why hooping is so great for improving posture, and five reasons why that is so good for you.
How Hooping Develops Strong Posture
Waist hooping works both your abdominal and lower back muscles as you push and pull the hoop to spin it, and these muscles are key to maintaining good postural alignment in your body. Hooping is one of the few exercises which works both of these sets of muscles at the same time. One of the other important muscle groups for strong posture is the two triangle shaped trapezius muscles which run across your upper back and extend from your neck to your shoulder to the middle of your torso. These muscles are exercised by elevating the shoulders, pulling the shoulder blades together and drawing the shoulder blades down. These actions are all engaged when performing hoop moves such as the Lasso, Pass Around and Weave, and when holding the hoop vertically in front of you and pushing it out and pulling it back towards your body. Good posture also involves using and strengthening muscles on both sides of the body equally which is something we encourage in our HoopFitness classes.
5 Benefits of Good Posture
Good Posture Gives You Energy
When your bones and muscles are in positive structural alignment, your muscles are being used more efficiently allowing your body to use less energy. Holding tension and pain in your muscles is fatiguing. This is significantly reduced if not eliminated when your muscles rest strongly in their natural position.
Good Posture Makes You More Attractive
Everyone wants to avoid developing a hunchback, but it is quite common to develop the precursor to this which is a hump like rounding at the base of the neck. Strengthening the trapezius muscles helps to prevent and reduce this as well as looking up more often as you do when hooping. Slumping also makes you look shorter and older.
Good Posture Helps You Feel More Confident
Most of us have heard the saying “fake it ’til you make it”, but faking it also helps you make it. Just as our body language usually reflects our thoughts and feelings, so our thoughts and feelings can be influenced by adopting certain body poses. When people feel confident they stand up straight, solid and balanced and hold their head up high. In other words they stand in a position of positive postural alignment. Conversely, when you stand like this you correspondingly begin to feel the confidence that your posture is demonstrating.
Good Posture Improves and Extends the Functioning of Your Body
We can’t guarantee that maintaining positive postural alignment will help you live longer, but it will decrease abnormal wear of joint surfaces and help you to breathe more fully. Breathing is one of your bodies ways of ridding itself of toxins. When you do not breathe in and out fully it contributes to toxic build-up and inflammation in your body. Breathing fully increases the supply of oxygen to your body, improves the quality of your blood, strengthens your immune system and reduces the workload for your heart.
Good Posture Increases Your Happiness
Research has shown that having a slumped posture makes it more difficult to think positively and decisively, and is a significant contributor to low mood. In contrast to this, standing in a strong upright position with your head raised can increase levels of self-esteem and motivation building testosterone, and decrease levels of the stress hormone cortisol in your brain.
Have fun hooping your way to improved posture and increased health, happiness and success!