Correcting a scoliosis spine: 20 best exercises for an upright posture
Here you will find all the best exercises to make your back, shoulders and neck healthy, straight and flexible. You can start right at home with these back corrective exercises. Use them every day and you can straighten a curved or arched back. You will also find explanatory videos to train a straight posture.
Exercise 1 – Stand with your shoulders against a wall
How do you get a straight back? This is a first posture-improving exercise. If you do this exercise daily, your upper back will soon become straighter:
- Find a wall that is free and stand in front of it, with your back to the wall.
- Stand with your knees slightly bent. So get them out of the ‘lock’.
- Tuck in your chin a little too. Push your finger on your chin to take care of this.
- Let your shoulders relax, so keep them low.
- Tighten your stomach by pulling it in a little. Your lower back hits the wall because of this.
- Keep breathing.
- Let your shoulders touch the wall as much as possible.
- Also put your heels against the wall.
- Also put the back of your hands against the wall.
- You may also put your head against the wall, but this is not necessarily necessary.
Variation: Do the exact same thing, but without the help of a wall.
Variation: Do the exact same thing, but while sitting on the edge of a table.
Variation: Apply one or more of the elements of this exercise at times when you are not formally doing this exercise. For example, regularly remember to retract your belly button when standing. This has a positive effect on the concave / curve of your back.
Exercise 2 – Pull your head forward (this works!)
It may seem contradictory, but stretching forward is really very healthy for correcting the curve in your upper back. See the video below for a demonstration by renowned doctor Erik Berg for this corrective back exercise.
Exercise 3 – Lie on a foam roller or large book
Lie with your entire spine on a foam roller so that your shoulders can sink down. Gravity does the rest of the work. And don’t worry, this is not harmful. It actually helps with stretching.
Exercise 4 – Place your hands on your lower back and push your pelvis forward
Put your hands on your lower back and then start pushing forward. Your hips can go all the way forward! You push your back into shape in this way.
You can also do this exercise in the sideways direction. To do this, find a wall, put one forearm against the wall and push your hip with your other arm so that you push your hip towards the wall. Then switch for the other side.
Exercise 5 – Put your hands against the back of your head
See what this girl is doing? Put your hands against the back of your head and do a stretch. Do this regularly if you are sitting a lot. It is of course even better to actually get up and then do this exercise.
Exercise 6 – Do push-ups against the wall
Just press against a wall as if you were doing push-ups, but standing. Always tap the wall with your nose. More corrective back exercises can be found in the video below:
Exercise 7 – Training shoulders to go backwards again? Pull or hang on to something
You can never make enough rowing / pulling movements! If you are in the gym, grab the cable machine and pull the cables towards your face or towards your body. Watch the last exercise from the video below (and be sure to use the first two exercises too!)
In addition, hanging is very healthy for your back. Find something to hang from, or hang from either side of a door handle like a monkey on a branch. This is called ‘traction’.
Exercise 8 – Place your arms stretched out behind you together
Place your arms straight behind you and then bring your hands together. Pull your chest forward.
Exercise 9 – Correct a curved spine? Do the cat pose (and take Yin yoga classes)
If you can arrange to take Yin yoga classes then it is highly recommended that you do so. These Yoga poses are designed for a healthy body. A very simple pose that you can do right at home is De Kat. See demonstration below.
The other Yoga postures are also very useful. Here are more Yoga exercises you can do throughout the day:
Exercise 10 – Do a ‘lazy’ push-up: the Puppy pose and the Cobra pose
Do a push up, but then lower your pelvis all the way to the floor while keeping your head all the way up. You stretch your arms completely. This is the Cobra stance. If you put your forearms on the floor, it is the Puppy position. Also very useful.
After doing this pose for 10 seconds, you can switch to Child pose: bring your buttocks back so that they touch your ankles while allowing your arms to stretch on the floor all the way in front of you. Alternate between these positions.
Exercise 11 – Pull your knees towards you – and rock yourself
Lie on your back (on a mat) and pull your knees towards your chest one by one. Bring them both together to your chest as well. You can also rock from that position. Continue to breathe , as with all exercises.
Exercise 12 – Lie on the floor and tighten your stomach
For this exercise, all you need to do is lie on a mat and retract your belly button, bringing your lower back flat against the floor. Keep breathing.
Exercise 13 – Make a plank or a bridge of your body
Do the plank exercise and remember your posture: keep your belly button tucked in and your butt low.
Or do the bridge pose by lying on your back, putting your feet flat on the floor, and lifting your hips. This is a core exercise, which is healthy for your back because your core muscles support your back. Most gyms have special classes for this.
Bonus Tip 1 – Purchase a laptop stand
I never want to see you work without a laptop stand again. Place the screen at eye level. You also need a mouse and keyboard for this.
Bonus Tip 2 – If you have to lift something, always get down on your knees instead of your back
This means that every time you lift something, you will do a squat or a lunge. Make no mistake: this happens very often in a day. Just think about tying the lace or putting on your socks! This takes more effort and you may not be used to it, but if you do this wrong dozens of times a day, you have a problem with your back.
Babies naturally have squat in them. When they want to grab something off the ground, they always squat. They forget this as soon as they go to school, where they end up in a sitting culture. Sitting down weakens our natural squat strength.
Bonus Tip 3 – If you have to lift something, do it close to your body
We always lift the distance, not so much the weight. We can lift a huge amount of weight if we keep it close to our body, but a few grams is already harmful if we have to reach very far for it.
If you need to lift, pick up or put something further away from you, first slide it towards you or walk towards it. If that doesn’t work, for example because you have to bend over to look in a mirror when brushing your teeth, find something to lean on.
Bonus tip 4 – Place lumbar cushion in places where you often sit
Lumbar pads support your lower back so that you automatically sit in an upright position. Perfect for your back. In any case, put a Defa lumbar cushion on your office chair and also put one for other places where you often sit, such as your car.
Bonus tip 5 – Have an ergonomic chair
It makes a big difference if your arms cannot or cannot lean on something while you are sitting at your desk. It takes a lot of pressure off your shoulders. So make sure you have an office chair with adjustable armrests. A headrest is also important. The chairs for gamers are excellent examples because gamers often sit at a computer for too long without getting up.
Bonus tip 6 – Sit happens: get up after every 25 minutes of sitting
The best way to correct the posture of your back, neck, and shoulders is to sit for no more than 25 minutes at a time. Make it a habit for yourself not to sit for more than 25 minutes at a time. Get up, walk back and forth for a while and possibly do an exercise from this page.
Variety is more important than attitude. Someone who does not have a perfectly ergonomic sitting posture, but does get up regularly, is better off than someone who has a perfectly ergonomic sitting posture, but rarely gets up.
In short: get up every 25 minutes, take a walk or do something else. Most offices also have facilities for this, such as games or perhaps there is a piano in the auditorium.
Extra advantage: when you are working, this also makes you extra productive. In that case, make sure that you are not disturbed during those 25 minutes. That can be saved up for those 5 minutes you walk around.
A daily lunch walk is an excellent idea.
Oh, by the way, also think about your eyes and look out the window regularly. This also stretches your neck because you lift your neck up a bit.
Bonus tip 7 – From now on, sleep on your back & without a pillow
This may come as a surprise to you, but it really is … Sleeping with a pillow is a bad habit that unfortunately is normal for almost everyone. And you do this about 6 to 9 hours a day! If you fix this, so if you go to sleep on your back without a pillow from now on, your back will straighten much easier. By the way, if you lie on your side, you should grab a pillow.
Bonus Tip 8 – Attend a regular sports class that includes core training and stretching
Exercising and stretching your core muscles is good for your back because these muscles support your back. So take good care of them. This can be done, for example, by regularly attending one or more of the following classes in your local gym:
- Core training and / or abs training
Bonus Tip 9 – Exercise creates a climate of healing
Sitting is the worst climate for healing. Our bodies are made to move. Movement heals because it automatically massages your muscles and joints. Cycling, walking and swimming are excellent for back recovery.
90% of back, shoulder and neck complaints heal in six to seven weeks, provided the conditions for healing are in place: movement. If your complaints are not over after that, there is a problem.
Bonus tip 10 – Alternate your working posture between sitting and standing
Sitting too long – but standing too long is not healthy either. It is best to alternate this nicely. Make sure you also have the option to work standing up. The design below is quite special:
(Exercise 10-20) Watch all these videos for additional information and poses
Do you want to train your crooked back straight? Watch the videos below with the best tips and exercises for a good, straight back and neck. Decide for yourself which corrective exercises you will use to prevent a crooked back.
Those were all the tips. Good luck with training a nice straight back!