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Dana Davis found out she had bad posture almost as an accident. Posture is such a hard subject in that it is easy to implement in theory, but difficult to implement in everyday life. Dana provided some easy tips that make it so much easier to implement, thus improving your health and posture. Listen for simple tips like sitting back in your seat. It is the small tweaks that make a big difference.

Dana. Dana has been doing Yoga since 1984. She has studied Restorative Yoga, been a certified "Relax and Renew" trainer, certified to teach Yoga for Scoliosis in 2013, certified to teach Yoga for Osteoporosis in 2017 and has completed advanced studies in Yoga Nidra/iRest.

She was a Flamenco teacher for 7 years and has also learned other types of dances.

Dana has been teaching yoga since 1999. She is also a teacher of the Balance Posture Method, also known as “Spinefulness” since 1997.

She loves helping people improve their posture and remove them from pain.

“Spinefulness” . Noelle Perez-Christiaens, yoga teacher from Paris learned that modern posture is misaligned and has changed compared to previous years and less industrialized countries. Around 1972 she found this insight and has been studying and researching since. Jean Couch studied with Noelle and from whom Dana learned.

If you grow up in an industrialized country today, you’re out of alignment. Your daily posture will not only be off the gravity axis but tends to cause all kinds of problem like excess tension and joint paint, losing height, losing energy and the whole list of problems that goes with it. Noelle calls this as “Aplomb”, while Jean called it “Spinefulness”.

Misaligned. Most people are misaligned and they don’t know. Dana has been doing years of dance and yoga classes, Tai chi and Karate but she admits she too was misaligned.

She’s been given instructions, which might work for some but not everybody; to tuck the pelvis, hold the stomach in, lift your chest, shoulders back, chin up, which she practiced but also admits it’s not sustainable since it requires a ton of muscular effort. People get uncomfortable and tired so they forget. The body would then be taken out of the body’s axis, our bones can no longer hold us up, while the muscles would take over. This is why we would collapse because the muscles can’t hold us up all day long, which is why we see people who stands with S shape, C shape, even sitting like a cashew (also known as C shape). These postures are normally seen from elderly people but is now also seen from kids.

Balancing a book on your head is not a guarantee that it would correct your posture since it would be possible to balance the book on your head but still be misaligned if you just got your head in the right position.

Balance Posture Method. Jean Couch was invited to do a lesson once a month where Dana’s working at. Jean looked 20 years younger, which encouraged Dana to learn what the method is all about. As Dana learned, she mentioned that is was a no-brainer as what was mentioned are things that are supposedly common knowledge but we’ve forgotten it. It’s basically about gravity and the physics of the body. It’s not our fault if we are misaligned because we took on our culture’s posture unconsciously. We imitate adults around us, so to get out of misalignment we need to make a conscious effort, we need to be taught and then shift out of it. It takes time and effort, simple and necessarily easy but then it would become natural since it’s based from studying cultures from all around the world, from so many different countries, they all have the same exact posture.

All kids have the same posture and characteristics when they start to walk at age 1 until age 3 at least. One of those characteristics is a vertical line, the legs would be in a vertical column. Nowadays people stand where their legs are slanted, their pelvis is in front of their ankles or maybe even their entire feet. With a healthy person, you would see the top of the hips over the ankle, the legs are vertical, a pronounced natural arch that’s built into the spine naturally just right above the sacrum. The spine would look pretty straight to the naked eye. It does not mean it’s literally straight but looks kind of straight as you observe them. The shoulders look flat against the spine, not poking out or winging out. If you look at the neck it also looks pretty vertical to the naked eye. The head is over the shoulders not thrust way forward off the shoulders. The butt sticks out behind all the body parts.

Dana reminded to “get your behind, behind you”. It’s called a behind for a reason.

So stand sideways in a mirror and if you notice that your back is behind your butt, then that’s a big warning sign that you are misaligned.

Healthy Posture. Misalignments are not usually seen from kids as young as 2 years old. Children tend to imitate their parents. So parents can learn healthy balance alignment. Parents can study Spinefulness that would help their kids before they grow old.

Parents are not just the influence for kids, so children should be taught once they’re able to understand the difference between unhealthy and healthy posture.

Parents can also read recommended books so they know how to talk to their kids about it. If kids can see pictures, they would easily understand what it means to have a healthy posture.

Back Pain. When you’re sitting you want to feel your sitting bones - the bones that are underneath you, which are also called as the butt bones.

Lift your butt off the chair, scoot it back, tilt forward bending where your legs meet your pelvis and make sure you’re sitting on those bones.

Depending on the type of chair, generally scoot all the way back, so your back can rest against the back of the chair and not collapse in a C.  If the chair is too deep, then have a pillow behind you so you can scoot all the way back.

Don’t tighten your back and sit in a way you think is straight, instead sit in a relaxed position so the chair will hold you up. Sitting should not be a strain but is a rest.

And check out Dana’s YouTube video at http://sonomabodybalance.com/pain-free-sitting-video/

Spreading the word. Dana have worked with some schools to educate the kids of healthy posture. Dana was surprised when she covered a class a couple of years ago with 7th graders and almost all the kids raised their hands when asked if they have back pains, knee pains, shoulder pain, etc.

Kids shouldn’t have that joint pain but should happen mostly to elderly people. The majority of the pain these kids are experiencing is unnecessary if kids can have healthy posture.

Check out Dana’s YouTube video from her website at sonomabodybalance.com, which is a 5-minute video that teaches pain free sitting which anyone can learn from, even  kids.

Dana also has blogs and articles for everyone to check and be more educated about healthy posture, as well as home study courses that are downloadable.

For the locals in Sonoma County California, Dana offers yoga classes called the Yoga for Healthy Back and the Balance Your Body Series – teaching people more than just about sitting, but also how to sit at their computer, standing, walking, bending, sleeping, driving, lifting, etc.

Book Recommendations

Author Kathleen Porter

  • Natural Posture for Pain-Free Living
  • Sad Dog Happy Dog: How Poor Posture Affects Your Child’s Health and What You Can Do About It

Author Thea Sawyer

  • Put Your Back at Ease: Pain Free posture for fitness and health

 How to learn more about Dana

Website: sonomabodybalance.com

Phone number: 707-278-8718

Address:

Sonoma Body Balance

210 Vallejo Street, Suite C

Petaluma, CA 94952

 **DRIVING DIRECTIONS

From Highway 101, exit at E. Washington Street and head west. If you’re heading north on 101, you’ll make a left turn onto E. Washington. If you’re heading south on 101, you’ll make a right turn onto E. Washington. Go past a couple signals. After Payran Street (which has a signal), make the next left turn onto Vallejo Street. We are in the second building on the right at 210 Vallejo Street. There is a parking lot there. We are upstairs in Suite C. PLEASE NOTE: Studio is upstairs, and there is no elevator.