How important is posture? Very important I've always maintained! Posture is a critical consideration in maintaining musculoskeletal health. It's also foundational to athletic success. We can't run, cut, throw or push without solid and stable posture from which to move.
I've also always insisted that posture is important to shaping the way that we present ourselves to the world! We perceive an individual who holds centralised shoulders, tall chest, tucked chin and a neutral lumbar spine much more positively than one who presents with rounded shoulders and core, and a slumped head and neck.
According to researchers at UC Berkley, posture may also have more subtle (but equally powerful) effects on our physiology. The researchers conducted an experiment in which participants were asked to hold a "power pose": either feet apart and hands on hips, or sitting with feet on a table and hands interlaced behind the head. After holding these "power" poses for several minutes the participants were rated on their performance in a stressful job interview scenario.
Unsurprisingly to posture aficionados everywhere the "power posers" performed better in the job interview scenario than a comparison group who held "weak poses" (head slumped, arms and legs crossed). Isn't it fascinating the idea that we can prime ourselves to present with increased effectiveness simply by adopting a physical position? If we feel good about the way we look and have confidence in our presentation, people take notice!
Try adopting the power poses and walk pattern suggested in this video, it can be a simple performance boosting tool with the potential to benefit almost anyone!