Posture Vs. Alignment: Aren't They the Same Thing?


Often clients will comment on their posture, usually with frustration and a desire to make some changes. But as a massage therapist, I'm generally more focused on function. Do you have a healthy range of motion in a joint or limb? Where is any restriction coming from? How are your muscles working together and is there pain resulting from imbalance? What is needed to restore functionality and balance to your body?  In my mind, our postural habits (how we sit, stand, bend, lift, sleep, work, drive) play a huge role in how our bodies look, work, and feel over time. And as I was stretching the other night before bed, a thought popped into my head, "Is there a difference between posture and alignment?"

Well, it turns out that there is quite a difference, and I thought some of you might be interested in reading more about it. The excerpt below is from a great blog post by Taylor Broggie and dives extensively into the differences between posture and alignment and gives some great visual illustrations, along with resources for improving your own alignment.

“Good posture” means different things to different people.  We decide that a particular posture is good if it creates a look that is seen as desirable.  Optimal skeletal alignment is objective.  It’s based on science—anatomy, physiology, biology and physics—rather than culture.  It’s the orientation of all the parts that allows everything to work the way it is supposed to work with the least amount of damage."

Read the full article at
And part 2, Stand Up Straight