Round out your workouts with stretching to help avoid a hunched-over posture down the road. “Posture, balance, flexibility, and spine strengthening exercises can help you with better alignment of your body now and in the future,” says Randall.
Lengthening tight muscles reduces back pain and promotes good spinal mechanics and posture, says Gibbon.
Muscles that are commonly tight include those you use to arch your back (spinal extensors); raise and rotate your shoulders (shoulder elevators and external rotators); lift your knees (hip flexors) and pull your feet toward your body (ankle dorsiflexor).
Perform stretches slowly and smoothly, “to a point of stretch, not pain,” Gibbon advises. For maximum benefit, do stretches once or twice a day, holding each stretch for 20 to 30 seconds.