Getting good posture doesn’t always come easy, and if you’re someone who frequently hunches your shoulders , you probably have to pay extra attention to how you’re sitting and standing. No one enjoys the look—or feel—of being hunched over, but luckily, if you’re willing to put in some effort, you can straighten out your hunched shoulders in no time.
Here are the five best exercises for un-hunching your shoulders, according to experts.
1. Chair Hug
2. Superman Pose
“Sometimes after a long day at the computer screen, you just want to lie down, and this exercise makes the most of that position,” says personal trainer Amanda Dale. “Make sure to squeeze the backside and engage the shoulder blades as you lift your chest and feet off the floor.”
“Keep your head up against a wall in retraction,” says sports chiropractor Dr. Matt Tanneberg. “Pull your shoulder blades down and back. Don’t move your arms or shrug your shoulders. Hold for five seconds and repeat. This will help to train your body to stay back in retraction with your shoulder blades down and back.”
4. Downward Dog
“This is a very common stretch that is familiar to most people,” says personal trainer Katy Fraggos. “Technically an active stretch, the downward dog helps to open the chest and shoulders, lengthen the spine, as well as stretch the hamstrings and Achilles tendon.”
5. Band Pull Apart
“Simply take a resistance band, hold it with arms locked out and palms facing down,” says trainer Patrick Henigan. “Then pull your hands apart by squeezing your shoulder blades together until the band touches your chest. Repeat for 20-25 reps.”
Try exercises and stretches every day to help open your shoulders and say goodbye that hunched-over look.