Terre Pruitt's Blog

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Archive for August 1st, 2016

Thinking About Posture

Posted by terrepruitt on August 1, 2016

Last week I was walking to my car from class.  I had just taught yoga and Nia, so I was feeling tall and in good posture.  I was sensing the spaces that allows for comfortable movement.  I looked up at a woman coming towards me and at first I thought it was a woman I knew.  The woman walking toward me bore a resemblance to my friend, but as I watched her it occurred to me that the woman I was looking at had completely different body language than the person I thought it could be.  The woman I was thinking of walked tall and erect.  She exuded confidence. The person walking towards me didn’t do that (stand tall) or give off that impression (confidence).  It made me pause.  It made me think.  It had me saying to myself, “Egads, what does my posture say?”

When I am walking on a campus of one of the places I teach, I try not to use my phone.  There are occasions where I have gotten delayed by traffic so I am turning my phone to airplane mode and preparing my music because I am going to be walking in with less time than I would like to have before starting class.  But, I think of walking to class as a time where I might have an opportunity to engage a member or student, so normally I am not on my phone.  I don’t usually walk bent over/looking down.  But I see a lot of people who are.

I AM normally juggling with my stuff, I take in my purse, a canvas briefcase, a water bottle, my phone, my keys, sometimes a jacket, sometimes other papers, sometimes my yoga mat.  So I am sure my posture is not very regal looking.  And when I think about it, I love the people I see who walk tall and look out at the world.

I often think about my posture while I am sitting at my desk, or watching TV, in a yoga class, or teaching a yoga class, but I don’t usually think of it while I am walking.  And I don’t usually think about it as an identifier.  As in I saw this stranger’s face from afar and thought it could be my friend, but then her posture and her gait made me realize instantly it was not my friend.  Even though I don’t think about it all the time, it is something we do, right?  We include body movement in the way we identify people.  The way we carry ourselves is part of our identity.  Well, duh, huh?

Sigh.  I don’t really know where I am going with this.  Perhaps I want to be more conscious of my posture.  Not just because I believe standing tall and having good posture is good for me, but I guess I would rather have part of my identity be tall, erect, confident, than bent over, slumped, and juggling.  Hmmmm.

What do you think?  Do you think about your posture at all?


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