Posture is important. If you’re like the average American who’s spent a ton of your life sitting (school, and most jobs) you’ve probably been told to sit up straight at multiple times in your life. When given this cue, you probably straighten out that hunch in your mid back, pulling your shoulders back and sticking your chest out. That’s actually a pretty good position to be in, but it hardly lasts. We’re so used to curling over our computers, and workspaces that we eventually ease back into our bad habits.

Bad posture can wreak havoc on our entire bodies, making us less mobile, and even setting us up for muscle imbalances and injury. And I’m sure you’ll agree most women are more attracted to a guy who stands up straight, and walks in confidence, with his shoulders square, and chest high.

The thing is this: bad posture is from a long history of bad habits of sitting too long, not stretching enough, etc. for most of us anyway. There are ways to combat this with a few daily exercises that take up almost no time, as well as things you can do in the gym if you regularly go to the gym.

In the videos below, I give some simple exercises you can do with a band and they can be done at home, or in the gym.

The exercises here are the upright rows, front raises and lateral raises. The upright rows and lateral raises are the most important movements to pay attention to here because they work your upper back and traps as I purposely shrug before doing the lateral raises.

When you’re in the gym, you can focus on heavy rows using a barbell, dumbbells or a cable machine. A good rule of thumb is to do more pulling than pushing. A strong upper back will usually fix most postural problems cause by bad habits and muscle weaknesses.

At the end of every workout, and even on your off days, you can do various movements with a light band.

Those movements are: (1) Band pull aparts, (2) Band dislocates, and (3) Face pulls (band or cable stack).

Band Pull Aparts

Band Dislocates

Face pulls + Myofascial release with a medicine ball

If your posture really sucks, or you get a lot of upper back/shoulder pain, you can start with the band pull aparts and dislocates 3-5 times during the day. I’d start in the morning with a set of 10 for each movement. A few hours later do them again and repeat throughout the day as you find the time.

Of course, it’d be easy to throw some bands in your bag and take them everywhere you go. I even have some clients who do these at work at their desk every 60-90 minutes or so.