Your mom was right to tell you to sit up straight though she may not have known the role it may play in increasing your confidence. In a new study out of Ohio State University researchers found that those with the best posture were more likely to believe thoughts about their qualifications for a job, than those who slumped.
“Most of us were taught that sitting up straight gives a good impression to other people,” Richard Petty, co-author of the study and professor of psychology at Ohio State University has said. “But it turns out that our posture can also affect how we think about ourselves. If you sit up straight, you end up convincing yourself by the posture you’re in.”
The study included 71 students who were advised that they would be taking part in two separate studies at the same time. One was organized by the business school and the other one by the arts school. The participants in the art study were told that factors contributing to people’s acting abilities would be measured. They were seated at a computer terminal and were told to either “sit up straight” and “push out [their] chest]” or “sit slouched forward” with their “face looking at [their] knees.” For those in the business study while in these positions the factors that were examined were about job satisfaction and professional performance. At the completion, the participants took a survey in which they rated themselves on how well they would do as a future professional employee. The students graded themselves as future professionals based on which posture they held as they wrote the positive or negative traits. The results found that those with well-controlled posture were more willing to believe the information that they had written about themselves. Conversely, those who were sagging their chairs were less likely to believe their thoughts good or bad.
“Their confident, upright posture gave them more confidence in their own thoughts, whether they were positive or negative,” Petty has said.
Here are a few exercises to keep your posture at it’s best designed by Dr. Liz Welch a chiropractor and founder and CEO of PostureFit, a company that teaches people how to get strong and fit in their best posture.
Side Bending: Soften your knees and focus on your inner core. While keeping your back in a neutral position lower to one side then the other side. Continue this for ten reps per side.
OverHead Press: Place the posture bar behind the neck. Now press the bar straight up over the head with both hands then lower again to behind the neck and again, neck into bar into neck and keep soft knees.
Upright Tow: Start with the PostureFit bar across your hips with an open chest. Raise the bar with both hands up underneath your chin with slow intentional control and then lower again to your hips. Repeat ten times. Let’s finish with a balance posture move with this same exercise. Narrow your base a little and put your left foot out to the side. Now using your balance, engage the core and do the same upright row five reps in that balanced position. Now switch to other side and lift right leg for five more reps.