Posture... What Is It & What Can You Do?


Posture is the position in which the body is held while stationary or while in motion, static and dynamic respectively, and while many people know and understand what an ideal posture is very few make the effort to make it a practice in their daily life. What is relatively unknown is how posture and body and facial expression can affect our mood; standing tall, head up, shoulders back, with an expression on your face that looks happy will actually make you happier and more susceptible to positive thinking. (Kleinke, C, et al, 1998)

Posture and the Effects on Mood

It is well documented that your posture, both standing and sitting, and even gait - manner of walking (Michalak, J, et al, 2009) can indicate your current mood and emotional state. When in a negative mood your body tends to slump, lean forward, and basically wants to be in a position where you are looking down. When in a positive mood your body tends to want to be upright and head tall, walking with a strut of sorts. But that is only looking at it one way, cause and effect; but can changing the posture consequently affect your mood?

A study done by Veenstra, L., Schneider, I.K. & Koole, S.L. (2016) showed that a more negative mood can be generated by manipulating the posture of the participant to a forward slumped one, but if the posture of the participant was upright or neutral, then they proved to be resistant to being induced to a negative mood. The same was done in the opposite case where the participant was more likely to be influenced into a positive mood when placed into an upright posture, such as having a higher self esteem. And research does show that motor actions and stable postures do have a correlating effect on emotional processes (Michalak, J, et al, 2014).

Not only can a positive or negative mood be generated via change in posture, but other research has been done to show that practicing an upright posture can decrease fatigue and and have a positive effect in cases of diagnosed depression (Wilkes, C, et al, 2017). Even adopting a particular breathing pattern and alter your emotional state (Philippot, P, et al, 2010).

Ideal Standing Posture

When looking at a more ideal posture, a simple assessment you can employ is called the Plumbline Posture Assessment (Norris, C.M., & Berry, S, 1998). Take the person you are assessing and get them to stand with one of their sides facing you and you look at these structures:

  • The ear

  • Shoulder joint

  • Middle of the torso

  • Hip joint

  • Knee joint

  • Lateral malleoli (prominent bone bulging out in ankle region)

Now if you draw a line along those structures you can get a sense of how ideal your posture is, the straighter the line the more ideal posture you have.

What can Richmond Rehab do for you?

There are a number of factors that can change your posture such as: body conditions, pregnancy, work, and physical activity (sports and gym), and there are also a number of ways to work on correcting your posture. Education and exercises and techniques from our expert team will get you understanding why your posture is the way it is and how to effectively counter it.


Kleinke, C. L., Peterson, T. R., & Rutledge, T. R. (1998). “Effects of Self-Generated Facial Expressions on Mood.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74, 272-279.

Michalak, J., Troje, N., Fischer, J., Vollmar, P., Heidenreich, T., & Schulte, D. (2009). “Embodiment of Sadness and Depression - Gait Patterns Associated with Dysphoric Mood.” Psychosomatic Medicine, 71(5), 580-587.

Michalak, J., Mischnat, J., & Teismann, T. (2014). “Sitting Posture Makes a Difference - Embodiment Effects on Depressive Memory Bias.” Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy, 21(6), 519-524.

Norris, C. M., & Berry, S. (1998). “Occurrence of Common Lumbar Posture Types in the Student Sporting Population: An Initial Investigation.” Sports and Exercise Injury, 4, 15-18

Phillipot, P., Chapelle, G., & Blairy, S. (2010). “Respiratory Feedback in the Generation of Emotion.”CognitionandEmotion, 16(5),605-627.

Veenstra, L., Schneider, I. K., & Koole, S. L. (2016). “Embodied Mood Regulation: The Impact of Body Posture on Mood Recovery, Negative Thoughts, and Mood-congruent Recall.” Cognition andEmotion, 31(7),1361-1376.

Wilkes, C., Kydd, R., Sagar, M., Broadbent, E. (2017). “Upright Posture Improves Affect and Fatigue in People with Depressive Symptoms.” Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 54(3),143-149.

Holiday Trading


Closed 21st December - 2nd January

Luke & Simon available from 3rd January - 13th January, returning on Monday 4th February

Jesse available from 15th January

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Massage & Myotherapy

Closed 24th December - 26th December & 31st December - 1st January

Shinya, Julius & Akiko are available throughout the break however spaces are limited due to demand

Pilates Classes

Luke & Simon are in to teach Pilates between January 3rd - 13th. The calendar is back in full swing on February 4th.

Please note that many health funds are now requiring their members to have a minimum of one initial assessment with a physio prior to funding any group classes. Please check with your insurer if this may impact you.

Spring Myotherapy News


Patients reporting head & neck pain would be one of the most common reasons for patients to attend Richmond Rehab. There are a multitude of reasons that may be causing your headaches, as there are many different types of headaches that present in the clinic.

Julius Principe - Myotherapy

Julius Principe has been researching the assessment and treatment of headaches from a myotherapy perspective and has created the following informative posts. If you’re someone who suffers headaches and wold like to learn more, Julius would love to meet you!



Are you finding your recovery following exercise has been a little slow?

Is your foam roller not effective enough to keep up with your exercise load?

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Shinya Yoshida, our newest and debatably most enthusiastic team member, has passionate about all things Sports Recovery. As an avid urban dancer & Taekwondo practitioner himself, Shinya knows the impacts of physical exercise first hand. As part of his passion, Shinya is currently the preferred provider for the O2 Dance Studio… helping their dance athletes keep up with the challenges of performing at a high level.

Wether you’re an athlete in training for a marathon, triathlon, powerlifting competition or you’re going on Dancing With The Stars, Shinya is keen to help you out with your muscle recovery and keep you injury free (and away from our physio team)!

Available Thursdays & Saturdays, Shinya is keen to help you achieve your exercise goals and get the most from your body!



Do You Find That You Run Out Of Time To Get Things Done?

Don’t Stress… Our Massage / Myotherapy Team Are Available 7 Days!

We know it can be very difficult to get in for a massage during the week. Our massage team are very good and therefore often difficult to get an appointment with. Unfortunately however, we often have patients come with issues after looking for a quick fix massage at their local shopping centre.

The story we hear is ‘I didn’t know you guys were open on weekends’

We are indeed here on the weekend and we find our patients are thrilled to be able to come in at a time that suits them!


Shinya Yoshida & Akiko Kato are the soft tissue powerhouses of Saturdays. Available from 9am - 5pm, the Japanese duo are flexing their hands in preparation for your tight muscles.


Akiko Kato & Julius Principe are treating the sore and tight muscles of Richmond every Sunday.

Do you charge more for weekend massages?

No we don’t! Our rates & outstanding massages are the same every day, even on Sundays!

Do I Need To Book?

We strongly recommend you booking in advance to get in on the weekend. Unfortunately we have to turn people away every weekend as the massage team are so busy!

Tension Type Headaches

Tension Type Headaches

A tension headache is generally a diffuse, mild to moderate pain in your head that's often described as feeling like a tight band around your head. A tension headache(tension-type headache) is the most common type of headache, and yet its causes aren't well-understood.

Cervicogenic Headaches

Cervicogenic Headaches

Cervicogenic headache is a secondary headache, which means that it is caused by another illness or physical issue. In the case of cervicogenic headache, the cause is a disorder of the cervical spine and its component bone, disc and/or soft tissue elements.