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posture gym exercises

The 8 Best Gym Exercises For Good Posture Today

Bad postures are ubiquitous today and certain gym exercises can worsen a posture beaten up by sedentary liftestyles. But in this article we will discuss certain gym exercises that can fix your posture today.

While your posture is something you hold for every waking hour throughout the day, there are certain muscles you can strengthen and imbalances you can correct.

Ideally, if you are to go about fixing a bad posture, you may want to consult a physician, chiropractor, physiotherapist, or other specialist, but there are exercises you can perform in the gym to make incremental improvements in the meantime.

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Gym Exercises That Fix Your Posture

Benefits of Good Posture: Revive Pain Management: Pain Management  Specialists

Before we get started, you must conscientiously look to hold good posture on a daily basis to correct rounded shoulders or a developing hump.

By deliberately pinning your shoulders back and looking up straight, you will be miles ahead than the rest.

Tight hamstrings and pectorals in particular can lead to bad posture.

There are stretching exercises you can do in addition to the exercises we will list — such as hamstring and hip flexor stretches; pectoral and anterior deltoid stretches, among others.

You should avoid leading a sedentary lifestyle and we recommend that you use a standing desk to avoid slouching.

Muscular imbalances brought about by lopsided training programs focusing too much on beach muscles — shoulders, chest, and arms — can also contribute towards a bad posture.

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The Muscles You Will Use

For improving your posture, you must attempt to correct muscular imbalances brought about by faulty training programming and strengthen muscles that will assist you in holding a good posture.

These muscles include your posterior deltoids (rear delts), lower trapezius, spinal erectors, glutes, hamstrings, and the entire core.

We will also throw in dead hangs for good measure. Even though they’re an isometric exercise, they boast tremendous rewards.

1. Romanian Deadlift

The Romanian Deadlift is perhaps the best lower body exercise to improve your posture.

This exercise will stretch out your hamstrings, improve hip mobility, strengthen your entire posterior chain, and lower trapezius and rear deltoids.

Romanian Deadlifts tick ALL the boxes when it comes to improving your posture.

They also require a lot of core stability to perform correctly.

The carryover from Romanian Deadlifts to other areas of your life will be insane. From becoming a better athlete to being a better lover, the Romanian Deadlift has one of the highest return on investment from any exercise.

2. Reverse Hyperextensions

The Reverse Hyperextension is an infrequently performed exercise at commercial gyms, but it is definitely a movement that is slept on.

You should be doing Reverse Hypers if you want to take your lifting to the next level. Become more athletic, blow up your Squat and Deadlift, add mass to your ass, decompress your spine, aid with recovery — all of these wonderful things, and more, will happen if you start programming Reverse Hypers into your workouts.

No matter whether you’re a bodybuilder, powerlifter, strength athlete, athlete of any trade, or just a casual lifter, you can all benefit from doing the Reverse Hyper (Reverse Hyperextension).

What Does the Reverse Hyper Target?

Why Reverse Hyper Extensions are Awesome - Spring Hill Fitness

The Reverse Hyper targets the entire posterior chain: glutes and hamstrings, directly; spinal erectors and calves, indirectly.

The strength curve of this exercise is exaggerated near peak contraction, meaning that the further along the movement you get, the harder it becomes.

Traditionally reserved as a workout finisher, the Reverse Hyper is best used for slightly hyper rep ranges — anywhere between 8-20 reps as the goal isn’t to lift as much weight as possible, but to get decent reps at a steady tempo.

The only problem with this exercise is that many gyms don’t have the right equipment, so you may need to use your imagination when it comes to setting up the exercise.

Far too few lifters take spinal decompression seriously, but repeated spinal loading without decompression work or mobility work at a minimum can cut your lifting career short.

Imagine training week in, week out, loading up several plates a side for your Deadlifts, Squats, Barbell Rows, and Overhead Presses without doing any work to counteract that downward pressure… it could be a recipe for disaster.

And I know some people might skip over doing these exercises because they’re boring or they feel like a waste of time.

Now, there’s no excuse to avoid decompression work as you will feel like you are doing something.

As we mentioned in our article on Spinal Decompression:

Another very effective spinal decompression exercise is the reverse hyper. You’ll need a reverse hyper machine to perform it, however.

Louie Simmons, the famous father of Westside Barbell, fractured one of his lumbar vertebrae as a young man and was told he would never lift again. Of course Louie being Louie, he had other ideas, and through a programme of rehabilitation that included using reverse hypers, he was able to get back to lifting absurd poundages – something he continues to do to this day.

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3. Face Pulls

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4. Wide-Grip Cable Rows

When it comes to improving your posture, do not omit this exercise.

Your lower trapezius will be one of the weakest, most underdeveloped muscles in your body and requiring of extra attention.

Working the trapezius, upper back, biceps, and forearms, this version of the cable row is often forgotten in favor of its narrow grip cousin.

The wide-grip cable row is not an exercise to ego lift on, and must be performed in a controlled manner with a pause at peak contraction and a slow eccentric phase.

The first few times you perform this exercise, you won’t know what hit you as it exposes how weak this neglected muscle is.

Busty women can benefit enormously from strengthening their lower trapezius for this reason.

Men with overdeveloped pectoral muscles can also benefit enormously by incorporating this lift into their program.

5. Dead Hangs

This exercise is fantastic for improving your posture.

It unrounds your shoulders, stretches your pecs and anterior deltoids, as well as decompresses your spine.

The dead hang is a simple classic — literally just hold onto a pullup bar and hang.

You don’t need to be a proficient callisthenics bro to do a dead hang. Heck, if you can’t even do a pullup, get some straps and hang!

The dead hang is a nice, simple, easy addition to your pre-workout routine or as you warm up.

We know that stretching can be very tedious to do. Exerting your energy on a lengthy stretching routine before training is fairly boring, but dead hangs can stretch most of your upper body.

If you don’t stretch — which you should — you should at least attempt a minute of dead hangs, spread out over as many sets as necessary, before starting your workout.

With the exception of your triceps and anterior deltoids, hanging on a bar can loosen you up before taking on an epic workout.

If you’re not religiously bulletproofing your shoulders through a targeted workout regimen, adding dead hangs can help you avoid injuries.

Athletes who throw — like baseball pitchers, quarterbacks, and cricket bowlers — or strike — such as boxers and martial artists — should consider dead hangs before dynamic activity in addition to their pre-existing warm-up routine.

Not only will it help protect the joint from injury, but also enable you to throw or strike with more venom.

6. Band Pull Aparts

Like the name suggests, this classic resistance band exercise is very simple to perform, easy to recover from, and can be done every day to keep your shoulders in peak health.

This exercise can be done every day, anybody can do it, and it can undo much damage caused by too much pressing.

Band Pull Aparts can also aid with unrounding your shoulders if that is what is hampering your posture.

A lot of pressing movements — bench press, overhead press, dips, etc. — can wear down the shoulder joint.

A simple rule of thumb to prevent imbalances from creeping in is to do twice as many pulling repetitions to each pressing repetition.

Your shoulders are a gentle/fragile joint; injuries can take a long time to recover from — which is why you’d want them to be in the best shape possible, not just to keep good posture.

In the past, we have strongly advocated for prioritizing your rear deltoids in your shoulder training for a variety of reasons. The band pull apart can help complement your training where necessary equipment is unavailable.

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Furthermore, you can do this exercise at home as resistance bands are fairly cheap.

You can program Band Pull Aparts into your workout as a warm-up, cool down, or just to get the blood flowing to the joint.

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https://youtube.com/watch?v=JObYtU7Y7ag%3F

7. Banded Good Morning

The Banded Good Morning is another one of those exercises you might see newcomers or casual lifters doing.

Some of you may not be able to do Romanian Deadlifts or Reverse Hyperextensions.

This is where Banded Good Mornings can come in handy as either a replacement or a warm-up.

By working the same muscles as a Romanian Deadlift or Reverse Hyperextension, you will begin to strengthen muscles that support your posture.

But this exercise can help you, a serious lifter, make significant gains.

The Banded Good Morning can help with improving hamstring and hip mobility, activate your Central Nervous System (CNS), forge mind-muscle connection in your posterior chain, help you unround your lower back, and warm you up before a strenuous set of Squats or Deadlifts.

I, personally, much prefer this exercise as a warm-up before taking on some heavy lower body exercise due to the aforementioned benefits.

Some lifters struggle with activating their glutes; the Banded Good Morning can assist with promoting gluteal activation and teaching an up-and-coming lifter proper hinge pattern movements.

Like with Band Pull Aparts, these can be done every day and are low impact.

8. Train Your Core (Planks)

The final exercise I will recommend is the simple plank — although this is to fall under the category of core training.

Most able-bodied people will be able to perform a plank for at least a few seconds.

The plank will strengthen your entire core and is easy to incorporate into your training program.

The other benefit of planks is that they’re not overly taxing on your body and are easy to recover from.

Moreover, you can easily track your progress with planks by adding a few seconds onto each workout to increase intensity or toughness.

Feel free to incorporate various plank variations such as “stir-the-pot” planks or side planks to keep your pro-posture core training more fun.

There’s nothing worse than staring at a dull wall for ages while your body shakes and your tummy is on fire.

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