Use Posture Photos to Unlock Your Clients' Body Awareness

Use Posture Photos to Unlock Your Clients' Body Awareness

Posted by PostureZone Blog on 23rd Apr 2024

As massage therapists, our hands-on work aims to address not only the physical symptoms our clients present with, but also the underlying imbalances and dysfunctions driving those issues. A new  posture study published in Frontiers in Neuroscience highlights an innovative technique that could significantly enhance our ability to do just that.

The study explores the concept of interoception - the body's internal sense of itself. This internal awareness, processed in the insular cortex of the brain, integrates signals from the organs, muscles, and joints. It's a crucial component of motor control, as well as self-perception and body consciousness.

Interestingly, the authors, Steven Weiniger, DC and Nathan Schilaty, DC, note that our unique bipedal (using two legs for walking) human structure places heightened demands on this interoceptive, sensorimotor system. Maintaining upright posture and stability over our base of support requires precise neuromotor control of the four key zones of postural mass (PostureZones): the head, torso/upper body, pelvis, and lower extremities.

Here's where the novel technique comes into play. The authors show that you can use a simple series of posture pictures to help clients better integrate their internal sense of alignment with an objective, external view of their body positioning. By correlating the clients' idea of how they think they're standing with the visual feedback, clients can start to more accurately understand how their postural zones are oriented relative to a vertical line on a grid.

Massage Therapy Results that Get Attention

As massage therapists, we know how powerful this body-mind connection can be. By empowering massage clients to develop a heightened proprioceptive awareness of their posture and body mechanics, we can unlock transformative changes. Changes that they see, that they feel... Results that WOW! Clients may start to notice subtle compensations, imbalances, or restrictions that were previously hidden from their conscious perception.

Incorporating postural photos into our assessment and intake process could be a game-changer. We can use the visual feedback to help clients identify areas needing attention, track progress over time, and reinforce the importance of proper alignment and body mechanics. This, in turn, can maximize the effectiveness of our hands-on work, accelerate the healing process, and support long-term musculoskeletal health.

Training Self Awareness

Ultimately, this innovative paper underscores the importance of cultivating embodied self-awareness - a core aspect of the massage therapy modality. By harnessing the power of interoception and posture analysis images, we can equip our clients with the tools to take a more active role in optimizing their body's structure and function. It's an empowering approach that has the potential to elevate our work and drive lasting, transformative results.

Read the paper: Interoceptive posture awareness and accuracy: a novel photographic strategy towards making posture actionable.

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