To Your Health: Posture—Medical & Musical Support
"Posture: Aligning yourself for good health" is the main topic in the May 2016 Mayo Clinic Health Letter. “Posture is how you hold your body . . . . It refers to the relative position of your muscles, bones and other supporting body structures. . . . aligned and balanced in such a way that your body structures are properly supported and protected.” The 4-page article goes on to suggest the following tips for standing posture:
Reach the top of your head upward while looking straight ahead. Imagine you’re a puppet with a string coming out of your head [sound familiar???] and someone is pulling on the string—but don’t tip your chin up or extend your neck.
Keep your shoulders back, relaxed and level.
Your legs should be straight and your knees neutral—not bent or locked . . . . Feel your body weight over the middle of our feet, not over your toes or heels.
Vocal pedagogue Victor Fields has this to say: “Because many common faults of phonation are attributed to faulty posture, authors of singing texts continually stress the importance of head position, chest position, tongue position, etc. . . . Freedom and flexibility of the neck, shoulders, spine, ribs and chest are therefore contributing factors in phonation.
So, pay attention to your posture—your voice and body will thank you!