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Instep Dance Magazine Articles

Reprints of monthly column as first appearing in Instep Dance Magazine (no longer in print).

December 2001

Posture Revisited: High-Tech Assessment

By Rick Allen, DC

"Better health leads to better dancing."

Last month, I showed you the simple, low-tech method of assessing posture. While that has definite advantages in the classroom, at home, at an athletic event or health fair, in my office I use a much more scientific, high-tech method: computerized postural analysis.

Posture: The Window to the Spine

It is said that posture is the window to the spine. Poor posture leads to reduced mobility, general stiffness and chronic problems. The center of balance is often shifted several inches forward, causing extra strain on the muscles of the neck and back, leading to such as headache, back, neck and shoulder pain. The accompanying sunken chest and compressed abdominal cavity causes interference with breathing and digestion. The nervous system, which controls every cell in your body, cannot operate at an optimal level. You may be tired because of the extra energy you use just to stand up! Obviously, you're not your 100% best. You might call it, "Living xx percent dead."

Surprisingly, even though the problems can be debilitating, many people are unaware of how poor their posture is. That's because the change is a slow process that has created the problems over a long time. Photographic evidence serves as a wake-up call for many of my patients that finally goads them to take the action necessary to make a positive change.

Getting A Baseline

Biotonix Front shot Biotonix Side shot

To make a change you first must get a handle on your current situation. While the simple, low-tech methods of assessing posture can give you an overview of the problem, I prefer a computerized posture analysis for my patients who are serious about making a change. A set of photographs with specific markers at key points on the body is taken with a digital camera and fed into a sophisticated computer program for analysis. The resulting computerized postural analysis gives you a safe, non-invasive, scientifically accurate biomechanical baseline (see attached photos of part of this report).

Developing a Corrective Exercise Program

In the case of the Biotonix program that I use in my office, a 10-week set of specific exercises is also generated that empower you to improve your posture and your health. Upon completion of the exercises, another photo is taken and the computer makes a comparison. This process can be repeated safely until you have reached you best possible posture.

Dr. Allen Chosen for Posture Study Group--Passing on Savings to Dancers

Jarvis montage photo

On November 5th, I was chosen to be part of an international study of posture by the Biotonix Corporation of Montreal, Canada and the Chiropractic Leadership Alliance. I am making computerized, state-of-the-art postural assessments and customized exercises during November and early December for only $25, instead of the usual $100. Don't miss out!

Several Portland area dancers are already participating in the study. As a sideline, I am also analyzing the posture of the female dancers with and without high-heeled dance shoes (see attached photo of JoEllen Jarvis). To be part of this select group of men and women with better posture and better health, call my office..

Stand tall--Have more energy, better health and balance--Dance better--And Save $75!

Next article: Next month, I'll introduce you to a set of simple, effective exercises developed by Bio-engineer Dr. John Christman to improve your posture. How appropriate for January -- a time for setting goals for the New Year. Combined with a Biotonix computerized analysis and persistent effort, this can make a powerful 3-month turn around in your posture!

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