Posture Check- The Bagot Stack Principles

Did you know that FLexercise is originally based on the seven key principles of the Bagot Stack system? The Bagot Stack principles is an exercise system that was pioneered in 1930 by Mary Bagot Stack to energise and strengthen the whole body. Mary believed that the body works best when posture and alignment are correctly placed and the body is energised. We are still teaching these principles today and above all, it keeps you fit and healthy!

There are 7 Principles, the first one being good posture and correct body alignment.

What’s good posture and correct body alignment?

In our FLexercise training resource portfolio good posture is described as follows:

‘Good Posture is one in which the segments of the body are so placed that there is the least strain on the muscles holding the position and the least wear and tear on the joints during movement. Correct pelvic tilt is of utmost importance. If this is incorrect there is a knock-on effect throughout the body as it repositions itself to counter the resulting angle at which the lumbar spine leaves the pelvic girdle. Muscles become accustomed to the length of their habitual posture, be that good or bad, and will become shortened or lax, depending on their position. ‘


 So what does that mean in practice?

Firstly you can see that in the first diagram (good posture) you will see that the pelvis is in neutral, that the weight is evenly distributed, there is tone between the shoulders, the head is well placed and the ribs are lifted. Posture

In bad posture (kyphosis), the pelvis is tilted backwards. This leads to tightening of the chest (pectoral) muscles and a laxness in the upper back and shoulder stabilisers leading to a rounded back. In turn, the hips and thighs thrust forward due to tense gluteal muscles.

In bad posture (lordosis), the pelvis is tilted forward leading to shortened spine extensors and a very arched back. The abdomen protrudes and this will lead to lax abdominal muscles over time.

Now all of these diagrams have the person barefoot and in class we encourage participants to kick off their shoes and work barefoot. We have a great blog on  barefoot exercise and how to keep your feet healthy

Check your own posture

Learn to place your pelvis in neutral – not tipped too far forward or backPosture

Lift your ribs out of your waist and elongate your spine

Draw your shoulder blades back and down without thrusting your boobs

Elongate your neck (no shoulders attached to ears)

Make sure the head is placed centrally – no poking chin and don’t look at the floor

Place the weight centrally over your feet

Slightly soften the knees. Pull your abdominal muscles in and your pelvic floor up

And finally, don’t forget to BREATHE !!!