Column 23 - Good Posture on the Beach

Original publication date: February 8, 1984

You've just spent 60 dollars on a new bathing suit that has a dollar's worth of material. You're out of shape, lack muscle control, and are flabby. You're going south in a few weeks. Chances are you'll spend another thirty or 40 dollars on a beach coat. The big cover-up.

If you dont intend on changing your exercise or eating habits, but are not happy with the way you look in your new bathing suit (or any bathing suit), there may be a solution to your tiny bathing suit-big body crisis.

First of all, realize that not many have perfect bathing suit bodies. When the bikini was "in" everyone wore one whether they had the body for it or not. It was the time to let everything all hang out. Now we want everything all tucked in. One piece suits are now "in."

The swimsuit designers believe one piece suits hide a lot of bulges and rolls. With the low back lines, low front lines, and high leg lines, not much is hidden. In fact, the stretchy material often accentuates the flab. If you're not trim and slim and are not comfortable with your shape, a walk down the beach can be an intimidating ordeal. (Especially if your added size is recent.)

Once you realize you are not alone with the bathing suit dilemma, you can do one of two things when at the beach (assuming you have accidentally left your beach coat at the hotel). You can join the many others in trying to hide yourself as you walk down the beach. Curl your shoulders in, round your back, hunch your neck forward and walk as if everybody is watching you and you are dying of embarrassment. Or you can put your shoulders back, hold your head up high, and walk with a graeeful fluid motion as if you are confident of yourself and the way you look.

The second choice is of course the answer. Proper posture can only improve the way you look and present yourself. No matter how big, or how flabby, if you walk with self-confidence you can conquer practically anything.

This type of posture can be called dynamic posture. Dynamic posture means an upright posture that is slightly moving, alive, vibrant, and responsive to the slightest change in body weight. Head, arm and leg movements are all involved in making walking a graceful art.

Good posture is not just for looks or added confidence at the beach. It can save you from many falls and injuries especially as you become older. If your posture is good, your centre of gravity is likely to be good. People who do have poor posture can offen become non-reactive lumps of flesh as they get older; one small displacement in their centre of gravity and over they go.

Poor posture puts more work on muscles, more strain on ligaments, strains on bones, and may eventually produce deformities. This is not exagerating. Those who are not educated in proper posture may develop improper posture habits which could worsen in their adult years. They may not know what proper posture is or how it should feel.

You should be able to feel your line of gravity. Stand with ankles directly below knees, knees below hips, hips below shoulders, and head held high with chin parallel to the floor. Everything in between should be held in firmly without holding your breath. Walking like this may require a great deal of practice and often pain as your back adjusts to the proper positioning of the body.

Your departure date is nearing. Practice walking like this with a book on your head.

Copyright 2021 K.L. McCluskey, all rights reserved.