I used to think of breathing as a way to work on people's posture. Actually, I tried to ram it down their throats. And your “bad” posture must be causing your pain with sitting being the new smoking and all. This was my thought process for years. I no longer subscribe to it.
I now understand that pain is influenced by more than just our structure, or an injury, or damage. It’s influenced by so many things. And pain doesn’t necessarily mean you’re damaged goods - a VERY common maladaptive belief for many.
What’s become clear to me is that it’s never just one thing that creates positive change. Many factors go into someone feeling better in a session and it's way beyond me. Safety, connection, state of mind, openness to change, partnership with me, trust, fear, curiosity, determination, persistence, self-worth - all these things factor in. For example, most people I see suffer with persistent pain and most are scared to move. They’ve actually been told not to move. All contributing to a heightened state of fear, anxiety, tension, creating this chronic state of flight or fight. Stress levels sore and pain persists. We move less because we hurt, but we hurt more because we’re moving less.
With persistent pain, our nervous system becomes very sensitive. Our nerves love three things: 1) Movement, 2) Blood flow 3) Space. Over the years, what I’ve seen is that when someone feels SAFE with me, they begin to move their body for the first time in a probably a long time. With movement, there is increased blood flow. Muscles begin to loosen, creating space around the nerves. All three will improve your movement options, allowing you to get STRONGER.
I’m trying to get away from the concept of “bad posture” and give my clients more movement options to choose from to become more coordinated in their body. Our bodies LOVE options. For example, if you’re gonna reach towards the ground to pick up something, let’s find multiple ways to do that.
So it’s not just me. It's not about your posture or how "damaged" you are. And there’s no magical exercise. It's a process of discovering what enables you to feel safe, to move, to connect, to move beyond limiting ideas and beliefs, and ultimately to get stronger.