How to Improve Your Posture While Eating

Eating is something that we do every day, three times a day, sometimes more, so it is important that we have correct posture while we eat. What does correct posture while we eat mean and where do we begin? Along with teaching yoga for 20 years, I have been a student of the Alexander Technique for over 8 years and they have both had a tremendous influence on my posture in all of my day to day tasks. More about the Alexander Technique here.

What is correct alignment while we eat? Correct alignment while we eat means that the spine is long, the neck is free and we hinge at the hips. When the neck is free and the head floats on the tip of the spine, the whole spine can lengthen. As we hinge from our hip joints we can get closer to the table, lifting the spoon up to the mouth, rather than pulling from the neck and head.

Why is it important that we have good posture while we eat? We are upright creatures and that has an effect on all of our organs. When we slump, it impacts not only our spine, joints and muscles but our organs as well, slowing down our digestion. Sitting upright when we eat can help to prevent bloating and heaviness. This means digesting and eliminating toxins with more ease. 

How to start:
1. Sit a bit more forward on your chair 
2. Come onto the top of the pelvic bowl so you are not tilting back
3. Feel the spine blossom up out of the pelvis
4. Let the head float on the tip of the spine.
5. Hinge at the hips and keep the spine long.
6. Bring the food up to the mouth. 

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About the Author
Jean Koerner is a renowned teacher of ISHTA Yoga (Integrated sciences of Hatha, Tantra and Ayurveda) for 20 years. Jean’s inspiring, well rounded classes are open to students of all levels. They include a combination of breath based movement and longer holding poses as well as pranayama (breathing techniques) and meditation. Jean clearly and articulately guides students through the poses while infusing the class with yoga philosophy and concepts. Formerly a co-owner of Be Yoga Studios in Manhattan, Jean developed teacher training programs for two major yoga studios, Yoga Works and Be Yoga.