How To Fix Hunchback Posture

What is Hunchback posture?

hunchback posture

Hunchback Posture (also known as having a pronounced Thoracic Kyphosis) is where the upper back is excessively rounded forward.

The thoracic spine forms a curved-like appearance (… which resembles the letter “C”).

The content presented on this blog post is not medical advice and should not be treated as such. It is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment.

For more information: Medical disclaimer.


What causes a Hunchback posture?

causes of thoracic kyphosis hunchback posture

a) Slouched sitting position

Think about it:

What is your posture throughout the day?… Are you up right?… Or is your back slouching forward?

The position you place your body for the majority of the day is what your default posture will become.

b) Confidence

Your level of confidence can affect your posture!

Low confidence and/or self esteem tends to present itself as a hunched posture.

c) Gut issues

Abdominal pain can force the body to adopt a curled up/hunched posture.

d) Excessive abdominal crunching

Excessive sit ups/crunches can lead to tight upper abdominal muscles.

This can result in the thoracic spine being pulled into a slouched posture.

e) Side sleeping

This is what I call “Horizontal slouching”… especially if you sleep in the fetal position.

f) Conditions

A pronounced upper back curve is also characteristic in conditions such as Osteoporosis and Scheuermann’s disease.

(With these conditions, there will likely be a limit as to how much we can affect the shape of the spine.)


Did you know… You will actually become shorter when you have a Hunchback posture!


What’s happening at the muscular level?

a) Tight muscles

  • Pectoralis Major/Minor
  • Upper abdominals
  • Anterior Intercostals
  • Latissimus Dorsi

b) Weak muscles

  • Thoracic erector spinae group

(These are the muscles we will be addressing with the exercises down below.)

How do I know if i have it?

Wall test:

test for thoracic kyphosis (hunchback posture)

Instructions:

  • Stand up with your back to a wall.
    • Have your feet away from the wall.
  • Aim to have your whole spine flat against the wall.
  • Stand relaxed. Do not over arch your lower back.
Results: If you are unable to place your entire back on the wall and a large proportion of your upper spine is away from the wall, then you probably have a Hunchback Posture.

How to fix Hunchback posture

backdouble

1.  Releases

a) Chest release

chest release for hunchback posture

Instructions:

  • Place your chest over a massage ball.
  • Push your body weight into the ball onto the floor. (see above)
  • Whilst applying pressure, perform a gentle circular motion over the ball.
  • Perform this exercise for 60 seconds.
  • Aim to keep your muscles relaxed throughout exercise.
  • Be sure to cover the entire chest muscle.
  • Repeat on other side.

b) Upper abdominal release

thoracic kyphosis (hunchback posture) releases

Instructions:

  • Position the massage ball in the upper abdominal region.
  • Place your body weight on top of the ball. (see above)
  • Make sure that you keep your abdominal muscles relaxed.
    • Tip: Taking deep breaths in/out will help keep your abdominal region relaxed.
  • Hold each position for at 60 seconds.
  • Make sure to cover the entire area slightly below the lower rib cage.

Note: DO NOT place excessive amount of pressure into your abdominal region! There are many sensitive organs in the area which can be subject to injury when too much pressure is applied.

c) Latissimus Dorsi

releases for thoracic kyphosis

Instructions:

  • Locate the Latissimus Dorsi muscle.
  • Place the foam roller directly under these muscles.
  • Apply an appropriate amount of body weight onto the foam roller.
  • Roll your body in an up/down motion.
  • Make sure you cover the entire muscle.
  • Duration: Continue for 2 minutes on each side.

2.  Stretches

a) Chest

Chest stretch

Instructions:

  • Place both hands on the door frame. (see above)
  • Lunge forward.
  • Aim to feel a stretch in the front part of your shoulder/chest region.
  • Hold for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 3 times.

b) Abdominal stretch

abdominal stretch

Instructions:

  • Assume the position as above. (… also known as the cobra pose)
  • Keep your belly button in contact with the floor.
  • Aim to feel a deep stretch in the abdominal region.
  • To increase the stretch: As you take a deep breath in, let the abdominal region to expand.
  • Hold for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 3 times.

Note: Do not over arch your back if you suffer from any lower back issues.

c) Latissmus Dorsi

Instructions:

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart.
  • Bend all the way to one side whilst reaching your arm over. (see above)
  • Aim to feel a stretch on the side of your body to the lower back.
  • Hold this position for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 3 times.
  • Alternate sides.

d) Prolonged stretch

Instructions:

  • Lie on the floor with your bottom at the base of a couch.
  • Place your legs onto a couch so that your hips and knee are bent at 90 degrees.
  • Place your arms towards your sides.
  • Relax in this position for 5 minutes.
  • If tolerated, you can place your arms in the over head position.
  • Note: If required – Use a pillow to support your neck.

3.  Joint mobilisation

If the joints in the thoracic spine are locked/stiff, it will be very difficult to change the posture.


a) Stretch into flexion

(The goal with this exercise is to create space between the joints.)

Instructions:

  • Whilst sitting, interlock your fingers behind your neck.
  • Proceed to gently pull your neck downwards.
  • Focus on bending at the upper back as much as possible.
  • Aim to feel a stretch in your thoracic spine area.
  • Hold for 30 seconds.
  • Take deep breaths in whilst in this position
    • Imagine the air expanding the area between your shoulder blades.

b) Thoracic rotation

rotation

Instructions:

  • Sit down on a chair.
  • Place your hands as shown in the above picture.
  • Rotate your spine (as to look behind you).
    • Apply force through your hands to provide additional pressure to the movement.
  • Oscillate in this end range position for 30 repetitions.
  • Repeat on the other side.
  • Note: Aim to feel the movement from your upper back, NOT your lower back.

c) Translations

Instructions:

  • Whilst keeping your pelvis stationary, slide your upper torso to the side.
  • Try to also lift the shoulder on the side you are sliding to.
  • Aim to feel a stretch on that side of your torso.
  • Alternate both sides.
  • Repeat 15 times.

d) Segmental cat/cow

Instructions:

  • Get into the 4 point kneel position.
    • Hands in line with shoulder joint. Knees in line with hip joint.
  • Starting from the neck: Proceed to round your spine down one vertebra at a time until you reach mid-back.
  • From here: Start from the mid-back and arch your spine one vertebra at a time until you reach the neck.
  • (Imagine the movement like a wave going through your spine.)
  • Repeat 20 times.

4.  Thoracic extension Exercises

a) Thoracic extension (Foam roller)

exercises for hunchback posture

Instructions:

  • Position yourself over a foam roller. (see above)
  • Support your head with your hands
  • Arch backwards.
  • Make sure you do not flare your lower rib cage out.
    • DO NOT arch your lower back. It is imperative that you isolate the movement to the upper back region only.
  • Oscillate in the end range position for 30 repetitions.
  • Repeat times.
  • Note: If using a foam roller is uncomfortable, try using something thinner. (eg. rolled up towel)

You may feel a few clicks as you perform this exercise. This is normal. It is a release of pressure within the joint space.

b) Wall lean

wall squeeze

Instructions:

  • Place both hands high up on a wall in front of you.
  • Lean firmly into your hands.
  • DO NOT over arch your lower back.
    • Keep your lower rib cage down.
  • Aim to feel tension in the middle of your thoracic spine.
  • Oscillate for 30 repetitions.
  • Repeat times.

5.  Strengthening Exercise

a) Superman

strengthening exercises for hunchback posture (thoracic kyphosis)

Instructions:

  • Lie down on your stomach with your hands stretch out in front of you. (see above)
  • Lift up your chest so that it is slightly off the ground.
    • Keep your upper abdominal region flat on the ground.
    • “Peel your chest off the ground”
  • Do not over arch your lower back.
    • You should not feel a significant muscular contraction in the lower back region.
    • Aim to feel the contraction in the middle to upper spine.
  • Hold for 5-10 seconds.
  • Repeat 10 times.
  • Note: If this exercise is too difficult, keep your hands in contact with the floor to help you lift the weight of your torso.

6.  Addressing other areas

Hunchback Posture is commonly associated with the other postural issues such as:


a) Forward Head Posture

forward head posture

A Forward Head Posture is where the position of the head is in front of the mid line of the torso.

Do you have it?
For more information, check out this blog post:

b) Rounded Shoulders
rounded shoulders

Having Rounded Shoulders is when the resting shoulder position is in front of the mid line of the torso.

Do you have it?
For more information, check out this blog post:

c) Anterior Pelvic Tilt

anterior pelvic tilt

The Anterior Pelvic Tilt is where the pelvis is in a forward rotated position.

Do you have it?
For more information, check out this blog post:

d) Shoulder Impingement

A hunched posture can also lead to shoulder issues.

Do you have it?
For more information, check out this blog post:

7.  The most important thing to do…

Practice your good posture. (…as much you as can!)

You can’t do these exercises, go slouch on your computer for 10 hours straight… and then expect your Hunchback Posture will magically fix itself.

Remember this:

How you decide to position your body throughout the day will determine what your default posture will be.


What to do next

1. Any questions?… (Leave me a comment down below.)

2. Come join me on the Facebook page. Let’s keep in touch!

3. Start doing the exercises!

132 thoughts on “How To Fix Hunchback Posture”

  1. Hi Mark
    Thanks so much for all the info! I have always had a weak back with bad posture. I’ve also had a long neck. Since I’ve had a child I’ve developed rounded shoulders, hunchback and a dowagers hump. Which of these should I tackle first? Would doing the shoulders one day, then hunchback, and then the dowagers hump and then repeat them all be a good idea? Any suggestions would be much appreciated!

    Reply
    • Hey Carrie,

      You can tackle any postural issue first.

      One of the harder ones to see change in most people is the Hunchback and Dowager’s hump. Perhaps you can focus your attention there first before moving onto another area.

      Mark

  2. I loved what you shared, especially you can see that I usually have the posture of the head forward, the exercises helped me a lot and I am going to combine with to improve my results

    Reply
  3. Hi mark
    Can you please elaborate “WALL LEAN”
    Exercises
    You told feel the stretch in mid back
    If I’m just leaning on wall how can i feel the stretch.
    Is this a static pose?
    what does that two arrow signify?
    What do you mean by oscillation ?

    Reply
    • Hi Shubham,

      You want to feel TENSION in the mid back, not a stretch.

      This will indicate you are bending backwards at the point where you feel tension.

      If anything – a stretch will be more so at the front of the chest.

      The arrows signify shoulder blades rolling backwards as you lean your arms into the wall.

      Oscillation means to bounce at this end range position.

      Mark

  4. Hi mark,
    I’m been dealing with a sore shoulder for a long time and my lat muscle on that side is really tight but it just won’t release when I stretch it a lot so I’m thinking I need to strengthen muscles around it so it’s not workin so hard can you recommend the right muscles to target strengthening so my lat isn’t so tight and over active
    Thank you 🙏🏿

    Reply
    • Hi Callum,

      If you tried everything to address the shoulder, it might be an idea to look at the torso next.

      Any side bending or twist in the torso can force the lat to become over active.

      Twisted Spine
      Side bending of torso

      Have a look at these blog posts to see if it applies to you.

      Mark

  5. Hi Mark! Love the blog and this article in particular, you’re very good at explaining biomechanics in a way that translates to someone’s every day life, and the specific exercises are top notch. As a medical student, this topic is rarely discussed in lecture, but like you I feel it is so important!

    The picture where you’re “slouching” while using your phone made me think of the free iOS app that I recently created, called ergo/

    It uses 3D orientation of the device to sense when the user may be slouching, and provides helpful prompts to improve posture. Since it works in the background, it can help with posture whenever the user texts/watches videos/responds to emails/reads your blog etc.!

    Would love to hear what you think of it from your professional perspective? It’s completely free and always will be, I’m hoping it helps people and I’m always looking to improve it!

    Reply
    • That’s the agony those who are building block where people go first whatever they issue face.

      Importance of maintaining healthy posture can only understood when someone lost it or have seen closely struggling someone in his/her life .

      You guys generally write painkillers
      And we people rely on it instead of learning about posture and nutrition!

  6. I have kyphosis, scapular winging, forward head, rounded shoulders and anterior pelvic tilt. Which exercises should I do? And is it good to do hold handstands while I have these conditions against a wall?

    Reply
  7. Do you suggest using a back posture corrector during the day to help with reminding to practice good posture? If so any one in particular?

    Reply
    • Hi Brandy,

      You can use a posture corrector in the short term to serve as a reminder to not slouch all the time.

      I personally don’t recommend it though as you run the risk of the muscles becoming weaker.

      Mark

  8. I am trying to fix my rounded shoulders but I sleep on my side all hunched. So I feel like im doing the work and then at night sleeping ruining it because I side sleep. I tried sleeping on my back with a “back sleeper” pillow. And with a pillow under my knees. I can only stay that way for about 2 hours then I wake up so stiff and in pain and then I roll on my side.

    Any tips for trying to learn to sleep on your back?

    Thanks, Cindy

    Reply
    • Hi there Cindy,

      Changing your sleeping habits (as with any well any habit really) takes time to over come.

      In the beginning, just aim for 1-2 hours. As the body becomes used to it, start to increase the duration.

      Doing some stretches before you sleep might help as well!

      Mark

  9. Good morning sir I’m sandeep from Rajasthan India . My upper back is getting slightly round and lower back going down I have feel weak when I seat in chair . lower back not good is always looking straight when I sit. my scapula is also coming out I feel so depressed please sir what will I do I wanna send my pic to you that’s why u judge my posture I am so confused please help me

    Reply
  10. Hi Mark!

    I have a mild kyphosis caused by Scheuermann’s disease. It’s actually not really noticeable (as I can say from MRI it’s less than 35 degrees) and was found accidentally in my mid twenties. The kyphosis seems to be a cause of rounded shoulders and difficulty to seat straight for a long time. I would love to prevent it from worsening as I age.

    Would it be enough to do exercises in this article? or should I include some other exercises as well?
    I also work out in a gym 3 times a week.

    Thanks a lot for your work!

    Reply
    • Hey Musaab,

      Where ever you are fused, you will not be able to change the shape of the spine in that said area. (Your rods and screws hold you in this position)

      You can focus on the areas above and below!

      Mark

    • How would I tell which area the rod is in? I don’t have the x ray of my post op anymore. Thank you for responding

    • Thank you once again and I have one last question. Would my spinal fusion stop me from fixing uneven hips as well?

    • Thank you once again and I have one last question. Would my spinal fusion stop me from fixing uneven hips and uneven shoulders as well?

  11. I have a kyphosis in front of the head, shoulder in front, I have been doing exercises for a long time, osteopat psoas said short, also said short in hamstring, my hip is shifted forward, my hip muscles are weak, my head is confused when two muscles are tight, anterior palvic tilt or posterior palvic tilt? I did core exercise for 3 months, my hip muscles worked without stretching my pilates, now my posture is better, but there is an incredible spasm and pain between L1 and L2 for 3 weeks, I JUST REMOVE SPASM WITH I PUSHED ON THE UPPER ABDOMINAL REGION, or posterior anterior pelvic tilt? I’m going to the osteopata, I’m waiting for an appointment, it’s locked, my toroko lumbal area, what can I do? thanks

    Reply
    • Hey Nurten,

      If your hips are shifted forwards, it is more common to have a POSTERIOR pelvic tilt.

      This is referred to as having a sway back posture.

      In this type of posture, the hip flexors are generally quite elongated, and then hamstrings are in a shortened position.

      Mark

  12. Hi Mark! Found your content today and did all the exercises re: round shoulder, forward head, etc. Awesome!! All in-line, if not better, than my physiotherapist’s recommendations lol. Thanks man! Btw, the link for ‘How to fix Anterior Pelvic Tilt’ is broken it’s missing the colon in ‘http://…’ :)

    Reply
    • Hey Richard,

      Glad that you like the exercise recommendations!

      Also – many thanks for picking up that broken link. I’ve changed it straight away.

      Mark

  13. Hi Mark thanks for your very helpful posts. I have a hunchback posture rounded shoulders + forward neck combined with an anterior pelvic tilt. I am currently using your programs to try to fix these issues. I am a skinny guy, I was wondering what’s your opinion on ligting weights and going to the gym while having these postural problems. Should I focus on fixing my posture only, or I can do some lifting too (to build size and strength) at the same time. If so what exercices do you think I should emphasize on or avoid.

    Thanks a lot !

    Reply
    • Hey Taha,

      You can definitely still gym whilst working on your posture.

      Any exercise where you are cuing better posture, is still going to be a good posture exercise.

      You just want to be careful as you can also encourage less than optimal posture when doing any gym exercises.

      Eg. Bench pressing is great for posture! (even though it is predominantly working on chest muscles) If you can maintain the shoulders back position, and let the bar drop as low as possible to give you a good chest stretch, this will HELP your posture.

      The ones you want to avoid are the exercises that you are not able to correctly control your posture.

      Mark

  14. An unrecognised cause of DH/hunchback posture is extraction of teeth in the teenage years. This procedure can also cause hooked nose.

    In my case, extraction of my cramped upper-four dental pair (counting from the front) at age 14, with braces to close the gap, caused a lifelong stooped posture (no hump) which I consciously need to fight against, unlike normal people. It was only a holistic dental surgeon who was kind enough to point out the errors of his mainstream practitioners.

    Only in recent years have North American dentists used jacks to separate and accommodate cramped teeth but in Europe the barbaric extractions still continue.

    So Mark: check your clients’ early dental history too! Remedial exercises may differ in such cases.

    Reply
    • Hey Trevor,

      This is interesting!

      I feel that there is definitely a link between teeth and posture.

      I’ve been recently looking into “Mewing” (tongue posture exercise) and its effect on malocclusion, forward head posture and breathing. So interesting.

      Mark

  15. Hi Mark,
    Thanks again for these exercises!
    When I do the last two exercises (superman and chest lift), I try to keep my lower back relaxed but I still feel something in my lower back but it’s not pain. I have other problems (Anterior pelvis tilt, knee valgus, forward head), so is it ok to feel it in the lower back?

    Could it be due to my Anterior Pelvis tilt issue making my lower region tight, so I feel it?

    Reply
    • Hey Jess,

      In the vast majority of people with Hunchback posture, the lower back paraspinal muscles are already over active +/- tight.

      Although it is fine to strengthen this area, this purpose of these particular exercises is to engage predominantly the muscles in the thoracic spine region.

      If you can feel both areas working, you should be fine! (Just try to emphasize the upper back more so)

      Anterior pelvic tilt will definitely play a role here.

      Here are some exercises for that: How to fix an Anterior pelvic tilt.

      Good luck!!

      Mark

  16. Hai I have a kyphosis problem for almost 5 years now my age is 20 and I want tu slove this problem urgently can u plz give me hard work out plain tu solve this problem urgently I am waiting

    Reply
    • Hey Haider,

      All of the exercises mentioned in the blog post will be the best place to start.

      On top of that, you will need to be more aware of your posture as you sit down.

      Mark

  17. Hey Mark,

    I’ve been sticking with doing stretches for several weeks now. I’m having some issue trying to figure out the ‘superman’ technique. I can’t seem to get my body to not engage my lower back. Is there an alternate exercise I can begin with to help isolate the muscle group and get a feel for how to use it?

    Thanks so much for what you do. It’s great to have information out there to help those of us who are motivated to improve but can’t afford regular visits for physical therapy or other treatments.

    ~Dave

    Reply
    • Hey Dave!

      If your lower back in engaging too much, try keeping your chest flat on the ground.

      Focus on lifting the arms off the ground only.

      Keep your head relaxed with forehead resting on the floor.

      (Keep in mind – you will still feel your lower back muscles engage, but make sure they aren’t the main muscles working in this particular exercise).

      Mark

    • Hi Mark,
      Fantastic work well done! Are the posture correcting braces worth trying as well as following the exercises you provided? If so, could you give us some ideas for selecting one?
      Thanks
      Oz

  18. I have Scheuermann’s and I play tennis. Some of the tennis exercises I do require a bent over arched back. The best I can do is keep a straight back. If I do these exercises can I get somewhat of a better arch or do I have to do more or is it even possible?

    Reply
    • Hi there Samit,

      With Scheuermann’s disease, there is likely going to be a limit on how far you can extend your thoracic spine. (Due to structural reasons)

      I would still encourage you to continue with the exercises on the blog post to make sure you reclaim as much movement available.

      Better thoracic function might help with your arching.

      Mark

  19. Hi,
    I am 38 years old with heavy hunc-back posture . Almost 3-4 inches i am shorter than when i stand straight. Do you have a intense workout programme ? Thank you

    Reply
    • Hey Bora,

      It would best to start with the exercises as mentioned on the blog post.

      From here- then you can venture out to do the more advanced exercises.

      Mark

  20. Hi Mark! I do workouts in the gym regularly and I want to know if there is any good exercises using weights to help me with hunchback posture

    Reply
    • Hey Marcos,

      Here are some suggestions
      – Rear delt raises
      – Dead lift (with shoulders back)
      – Bent over Row
      – End range shoulder flexion with cable

      Mark

  21. Hi Mark,

    I have visited your sites numerous times now. You, and a few other online physiotherapists, have motivated me to work on my posture once again. Myself, when looking in the mirror and thinking about it, see a giant kyphoses / hunchback. My friends say it isn’t that obvious and a few actually said they haven’t noticed till I started talking about it.

    I recently visited my doctor and got an appointment for a specialist. I feared my age (nearing 30) might be a problem, she said its true that my age doesn’t help me but I should be able to see progress.

    I hope your, my therapists and other online excersices help me get some progress at my older age. I would like to thank you for helping and I hope it will help my body (and my body image).

    Thanks,

    Mark

    Reply
    • Hi Mark,

      Great to see that you have decided to work on your posture.

      It’s not going to be easy, but will be well worth it in the long run.

      Good luck! … and hopefully I can keep providing with content that will help you :)

      Mark

  22. Hi Mark,

    Thank you for your articles and exercises. My main issue is hunchback posture from years of slouching, I assume other issues are present as well.
    I have tried your exercises with some results, but it feels like my vertebrae are “stuck” and I physically can’t get into a better posture, no matter how much I stretch.
    Should I consult a doctor and which type do I search for?
    I can provide a photo if you need it.
    Thanks again.

    Reply
    • Hey Corne,

      Keep persisting with the exercises! You might just be very tight and needs more time and consistency to get some improvements.

      On the other hand, the joints may also be fused which means there might be some limitations as to how far the exercises will get you.

      Best person to see would be a physical therapist or any other health professional that is confident with hunch back posture (aka thoracic kyphosis)

      Mark

  23. Hi Mark. I have been having difficulty when doing planks and push ups (and honestly majority of my core strengthening exercises). My shoulder baldes feel like they “slide forward” when I do anything that requires me to bend over, causing a hump (I think it’s pretty significant). Ive been to PT and they said I do not have a kyphotic spine, but when I bend over it’s pretty obvious! Could the hunch be caused by rounded shoulders moreso than a curvature of the spine? I’m at a loss for what I can do to maintain my workout but also correct my posture.

    Reply
    • hello mark i got bulging disk at my cervical spine and early signs of degeneration at my lumbar spine it started all with a pop saying it was shoulder impingement now i got so many problems where do i start what is main focus that i should do with all them problems fix the impingement?FYI its been 2 years please give any suggestions

  24. What exactly does upper abdominals mean in hunch back posture ????

    And can you please clear me the abdominal muscles tight in sway back and flat back posture ??? Please do mention the muscles name as i am getting confused between upper abdominals and lower abdominals

    Reply
    • Hi Mayank,

      Upper abdominals are part of your stomach muscles underneath your ribs.

      This area, especially if you sit in a flexed posture, will generally be quite tight.

      Mark

  25. Hi Mark,

    Am patient of Rheumatoid Arthritis with hunch back. Please recommend specify exercises for me to accordingly fix hunch back.

    Regards,

    Reply
    • Hi Shah,

      The exercises in this blog post are the main ones I recommend for hunch back posture.

      With your background of RA, it is fine to perform the exercises, but just be aware of your irritability whilst performing the exercises.

      Mark

  26. Hi Mark. I love what you do. What could be causing my hot/flushed red face? Also bad head pressure when bending over/foward?
    Thankyou

    Reply
    • Hey Elijah,

      The first thing that pops into my mind is blood pressure. But this tends to fall outside my specialty so I can’t give a specific answer unfortunately.

      It might be an idea to get your blood pressure measured at the doctors?

      Good luck! And I hope you find out a solution.

      Added: Sometimes if you have a Forward head posture, this could result into symptoms such as a feeling of a heavy head.

      Mark

  27. Hey Mark!

    I’ve recently seen a chiropractor about my bad posture and various problems have popped up (from ankle / calf flexibility, non existent glute muscles, tight hips, tight back, shoulders all the way up to the neck… the lot essentially).

    I’m wondering however, how many times should I stretch per week? Per day even?

    I’m confused about the “volume per week for each issue” as everywhere gives conflicting responses.

    Would it be best to do a different issue each day? e.g: Mon-Lower body, Tue-Upper body. Or to do a mixture of everything each day. (or to target a specific issue each day, such as APT, rounded shoulders, etc)

    Side note, I go to the gym 4 days a week for strength training (Upper body on Mon & Thu, lower body on Tue & Fri), will this conflict or limit my stretching?

    Cheers!

    Ben

    Reply
  28. If a person (me) has all of the above due to EDS (ehlers danlos syndrome), and doesn’t have the time to hit every single issue twice a week, but instead can work on one major area at a time, which do you recommend targeting first? I work at a computer all day also. I am active, and I am not over weight. My posture has improved. But I still have a flaring left rib, rounded back and shoulders, protruding forward neck (I get paid behind my left ear which is caused by this, and it is my indicator to fix my posture, and then the pain goes away), my hips are some what aligned but I do have stomach issues which causes my stomach to extend forward. So I just don’t know which to Target first. 😁

    Reply
    • Hi there Jackie,

      It doesn’t really matter which area to focus on at the start. Optimising any one part of the body will help with the body as a whole.

      In terms of what will give you the most bang for your buck, it is all a matter of trial and error.

      All the best!

      Mark

    • Hey Adam,

      This is really a hard question to answer! It really depends.

      But… in regards to the thoracic spine, I find it very tight in a majority of people.

      It’s going to take time and consistency. Keep motivated :)

      Mark

  29. I have one side with of my neck with really tight scalene muscles. I have started implementing posture exercises for my very poor posture but how to I correct this issue?

    Reply
    • Hi Joelle,

      If one side of your neck has tight scalenes, you probably have a rotated and/or tilted neck.\

      On top of stretches, you will need to address why you have a tilt/rotation.

      A common cause (but not the only one) is scoliosis.

      I have a blog post coming out on this soon! Stay tuned :)

      Mark

  30. Hello,

    I have dowagers hump and forward head from working at a desk job for years and I am looking to correct it. Will a posture corrector help? If so, which one would you recommend? I am a student, so something cost efficient would be great. Thank you, :)

    Reply
  31. I’m 21 yrs old and have a poor posture from many years. Now even if I try to sit straight, my back starts to pain. When I still continue the straight posture, my backbone feels like it’s going to break, because there is such terrible pain. So eventually I give up and come back sitting with my previous poor posture. What should I do? Does it actually pain this much? And is it okay for me to continue the straight posture even if the pain is terrible?

    Reply
    • Hi Suzy,

      Sounds like you are forcing the posture. This will result in more stiffness and possibly pain.

      You may need to work on releasing the tight structures to allow your good posture to become more natural for you.

      Mark

    • Hi Mark!,
      I’m 14 and have noticed a ball like thing on my back this month, my mom always told me to sit straight and maintain a good posture but I usually didnh believe her, but i would catch my self slouching in class and would fix my posture. But sitting in a chair most of the day just makes my back tired and this situation a lot worse :(. I use to dance most of my short life but having a good posture literally 24/7 would make me tired so I think that’s what caused me to slouch most of the time. MY BIG QUESTION IS, Can this be fixed by doing these exercises?!! Will it get rid of the ball in my neck?!!I don’t want this to worsen and definitely not give me pain, right now I don’t feel any pain. Also are back supporters good to use to help fix my posture while in school? And I’m hoping that’s good. Anyways sorry for the long paragraph. :/ -Amber

    • Hey Amber,

      Yes – you can correct postural issues with exercises.

      I am not a huge fan of postural braces in the long term, however, they can help serve as a reminder to maintain good posture in the short term.

      Mark

  32. Thank you so much for these tips! Would you also see an exaggerated lumbar lordosis with this posture? I have a pretty bad hunchback, with a good amount of lumbar lordosis. However, I don’t think I have an anteriorly rotated pelvis (so that rules out a swayback posture I believe). Is this the right article for me? Feel free to let me know. I’ve had TERRIBLE posture since I was in my teens, now I am almost 30 and can’t take it anymore. Having upper back pain. Trying to fix it before it gets worse!

    Reply
    • Hey Michelle,

      If you have a hunchback, then it is very likely you will have a hyperlordosis in the lower back.

      These exercises will be a great starting point for you.

      Mark

  33. Iam 33years female, i had (a right sided curve) scoliosis fixation opoeration 14 years ago, then i had another operation for removal of the broken metal rods and all screws ayear ago, since then iam having increasing pain and increasing scoliosis and hyperkyphosis too, i had physiotherapy and pain therapy for months with no effects ……

    Reply
  34. hey Mark
    Is it true that it is difficult to fix hunchback after age 20 because the spine stops growing ?
    i’m 20 now and I’m afraid I can not fix my posture with exercises

    Reply
  35. Hi Mark, fantastic blog!

    Got a weird question for you. I solved (I think) my anterior pelvic tilt (and flat feet) with a physiotherapist a few years ago, but now I was told I have rounded shoulders and stiff neck muscles contributing to hunchback. One thing I notice is my lower ribs still flare out and I’m wondering if that’s somehow connected. Why do lower ribs flare and are there specific muscles or exercises I should focus more on to fix this? Thanks

    Reply
    • Hey there Cara,

      WHAT A COINCIDENCE!

      I am actually working on a post “How to fix your Rib flare” right now.

      It should be up by next week or so.

      Follow me on Facebook to make sure you get the notification.

      Mark

  36. hello and Thanks for the great tips sir .
    At the end of the article you state that we shouldnt sit on the computer for 10 hours after these excercises but what if my job demands it . You see, I work a desk job for 9 hours a day but i try to stand as much as i can every 45 minutes at least . And i have also started working out at the gym and i try to excercise my back arches with some weights .I think I have had a hunchback for at least 7-8 years but I wasn’t able to go the doctor for reasons I cannot explain now and my back since i got this job(around 8 months) started to hurt . Do you have any tips ? And thank you very much for the article.

    Reply
  37. Hello Mark,
    I’m 27 years male, recently in a X-RAY test i found out the cause of lower back ache which was since last 7 months. The report says there is a loss of LUMBAR LORDOSIS. I request you to kindly guide me for the correct posture which i should follow regularly including sleeping postures if any. As i’m working guy who has on table job for 8-9 hours sitting in my office and working on PC/Laptop. This is only issue in body which i want to cure as soon as possible also i don’t prefer medication for all these.
    So please suggest some posture or any eBook with the same.

    Thank You.

    Reply
  38. Hi mark, as of yet my back doesn’t allow me to be able to do the superman, is this a bad problem or is there an alternative exercise that I can do until I am able to do the superman?

    Reply
    • Hi Danny,

      You can just do the CHEST LIFT exercise with your chest supported on a stool.

      If you are too curved in the upper back (kyphotic), you will have to work on getting it less hunched so that eventually you should be able to do the superman flat on the floor.

      Mark

  39. If someone has multiple posture issues, in my case for example: hunchback and anterior pelvic tilt. should I first care about only one or should I do the excersises for both issues.

    Reply
    • Hey Mike,

      Great question.

      Many of these postural issues are inter-linked. Meaning – a change in one area will likely change another area.

      In terms of what to focus – I would do all exercises if you have the time.

      If you are short for time, focus on the area that will give you the most benefit once corrected. For eg. I find that many people who correct their hunch back posture, will see some improvement in their anterior pelvic tilt.

      Hope this answers your question.

      Mark

  40. Dear Mark,

    I have had poor posture for several years. However, now even when I sit upright I am not able to straighten my spine completely. There is a small curve. Is this what is considered structural kyphosis? If so, do you think exercises and constantly sitting and standing in excellent posture can greatly diminish the curve degree over time? Or is there no hope – only surgery?

    Reply
    • Hi Vanessa,

      These exercises should help reduce the size of your kyphosis over time.

      But it really depends on how long you’ve had it, how significant the kyphosis is, past history, hereditary factors etc.

      It has probably taken some time for it to develop, so it will take some patience and consistency to address it.

      Mark

  41. Hi Mark,
    I have a Hunchback posture,Forward head posture,
    Rounded shoulders and Anterior pelvic tilt problem.
    So could you please give me an advise for all of problem.
    I’d read your articles, but I have 4 bed posture !
    So I’m not sure which exercises will match with all 4 posture by the way thanks for reply Mark.

    Reply
  42. Hi Mark,
    Hunchback posture,Forward head posture,
    Rounded shoulders and Anterior pelvic tilt, I think
    I’ve got those problem right now, Is it possible ?
    what should I do now ? I have read your articles but if I do all exercise it a lot of time to do, can you give me an advise thanks.

    Reply
    • Hey Patt,

      Looks like you have a cluster of postural problems! (don’t worry, it is actually common)

      There are quite a lot of exercises to do. And when you have more than one more problem, they certainly do add up.

      Try addressing the area first that gives you the most pain.

      After that, I would address either your thoracic spine or pelvic region.

      Mark

  43. Hi, when I put myself in an upright posture the left and right sides of mid back have these small curved humps that show. Does that mean I have structural kyphosis? Also I have started doing these exercises and a few more every day 3 times a day. If I keep up with this how long will it take for the humps to go away. Of course, everyone is different but on average. You insight is highly appreciated!

    Reply
    • Hi Sara,

      When you say that you have small curved humps, do you mean the muscles that lie either side of your spine are more prominent?

      If so – this is very common with the kyphotic posture. It’s your back muscles trying very hard to hold your upper torso more upright.

      When dealing with this kind of posture, it can take over a couple of months.

      However – there should be some quick small improvements if you do the exercises on the daily.

      Mark

    • Thank you very much for your reply. Yes, on either side of my spine, very close to it are two small humps. However, my shoulder area including blades protrude out (from both sides with a narrow straight center) and I feel like something keeps them from being in. Is it possible that muscle from under keep it out or is it more likely that my ribcage is curved inward? I realize what you say is limited by what I tell you and I am going to go to a doctor to see in person but your thoughts in the meantime mean a lot!

  44. My work involves mostly being at a computer and developing hunchback. Can you recommend a chair or help for sitting to keep better posture?

    Reply
  45. Hi Mark,

    I’m just getting started and know that I won’t keep up with this many exercises. If I were to build up to doing more, are there just a couple that I could start with doing consistently?

    Reply
    • Hi Jen,

      Just do the Chest Stretch against a door frame everyday.

      This exercise is really great for addressing your Rounded Shoulders.

      Mark

    • Hey Nate,

      Hunchback posture refers to the spine being in flexion (thoracic kyphosis).

      But – you are definitely correct. The hunchback posture will also have rounded shoulders as part of it.

      However – Rounded shoulders can also occur without a flexed upper spine.

      Hope this clears things up for you.

      Mark

    • Hi Christina,

      I got a page with many of the tools I recommend.
      But to be honest – any ball with the right firmness and size will do :)

      Mark

    • Sway back posture can involve a Hunch back posture. I guess you can say it’s the bigger picture.

      Where as hunch back posture just refers to the thoracic being flexed forward.

      Mark

  46. Hi Mark, thanks for the exercise tips! What is your opinion on the posture corrector or shoulder brace in the market? They claim to fix the body posture just by wearing them.

    Reply
    • Hi Dillon,

      They serve as a great reminder to maintain good posture, however, if you wear them excessively, your actual postural muscles will become lazy. (… And more often than not, the posture becomes worse when you take them off!)

      Mark

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