Posture is more important than just appearance
No individual will look happy or powerful when they walk around with a hunched back, head down and with shoulders closing in.
The ideal posture is a state of musculoskeletal balance and provides prevention of spinal dysfunction, joint degeneration, and pain.
Furthermore, the muscular state when standing or sitting can initiate and modulate emotions.
A study published in the Journal of Health Psychology investigated the importance of sitting postures and the affect to cardiovascular responses to a psychological stress task.
Seventy-four participants were recruited and tested under a simulated job interview scenario. Whilst in this stress task the participants were randomly directed to either a slumped or upright seated posture.1
The study reported that adopting an upright posture in stressful situations can maintain self-esteem, improve positive moods, increase rate of speech and reduced self-focus compared to slumped posture.1
Why don’t you experiment with your stance and sitting posture? Try switching on your postural awareness when you enter your interview, compete in a tennis game, triathlon, speech at a convention, or even meet the parents. You may feel like Superman or Wonder Woman.
1. Nair, S., Sagar, M., Sollers, J. 3rd, Consedine, N., Broadbent, E. (2015) Do slumped and upright postures affect stress responses? A randomized trial. Health Psychol.;34(6):632-41.