• Tuesday, July 22, 2014RSS Feed

    Shirts May Be No Slouch When it Comes to Posture

    Bad posture? There's a shirt for that. Well, maybe.

    A July 21 Wall Street Journal article reports on preliminary studies of "posture" shirts—essentially shirts with built-in elastic bands that work with muscle groups to correct slumping shoulders and drooping heads—that show improvements in neck and back pain, and some increase in sports performance.

    The WSJ article points out that even if the shirts do alter posture while they're worn, the issues behind the posture problem may not be properly addressed—an idea attributed to Timothy Sell, PT, who was interviewed for the piece. Sell points out that underlying problems, such as an imbalance between pectoral and back muscles, need to be corrected to truly address poor posture.


    Comments

    I'm not familiar with the shirt directly, but anything that gives a little feedback to postural control muscles can provide some of the multiple repetitions of practice that we look for in changing habits as a form of motor learning. That said, I imagine that the elastic wears out with washing, and fit affects the effectiveness, and would thus be very expensive. Of course, underlying problems should be addressed as well.
    Posted by Carolyn Hoffman, PT on 7/28/2014 10:13 AM
    We have used these shirts with several patients. They do help to provide feedback in conjuction with exercise training. Once the patient has the strength, the become much less dependent on the shirt!
    Posted by Jacqueline McAdam -> >OU\BG on 7/30/2014 10:25 PM
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