What to Look for in a Posture Corrector, Plus 5 We Recommend
By: Sara Lindberg
There’s a good chance your shoulders are a bit hunched over, as you're reading this right now. If often you find your lower back rounded, and core muscles rarely engaged, you’re not alone. You probably know that keeping your shoulders pulled back and core engaged is how your posture should be, but it can be hard to remember to do this all the time. Don’t sweat, we’ve got some great news! Just like training your body at the gym, you can train yourself to adopt proper posture by using posture correctors throughout the day. We talked to two doctors to learn what to look for in a posture corrector and reviewed countless testimonials to bring you five posture correctors worthy of your consideration.
Why good posture matters
You have probably been hearing from a young age how important good posture can be. Not only does it develop strength in areas of your body that experience the most chronic pain (your lower back), it also helps reduce the tension in your neck, shoulders, and upper back. Did you know good posture can also: Boost energy levels Help you breathe better Assist in maintaining proper form when exercising Reduce the chance of injury during physical activity Make you appear taller Although there are many great benefits, it can be difficult to remember to stand tall all day long. That’s where a back brace or posture corrector comes in handy.
What to look for in a posture corrector
Searching for a posture corrector online can often be overwhelming and leave you with endless options. When determining which posture corrector is right for you, here are a few things to consider: Does it encourage muscle activation? - the goal of a posture corrector should be to activate the muscles. That’s why Dr. Amir Vokshoor recommends a soft brace: It reminds the body, and our postural muscles, of the optimal place to be. “If you’re constantly supporting the spine in a certain position, it can make the muscles in the spine atrophy and become lazy,” says Dr. Amir Vokshoor, spinal neurosurgeon and chief of the spine at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, California, and founder of NeuroVella Brain Spa. How effective is it?- Your posture corrector should focus on key areas of the body. Vokshoor says the areas of posture that are most important are the neck, cervical thoracic junction, lower back and comfort. No matter how effective a posture corrector may be, Vokshoor says, if it’s too uncomfortable, people will struggle to wear it. And if people don’t wear it, the efficacy factor becomes irrelevant. “I find that the most comfortable ones are also the most effective, as are the softer ones since they tend to keep the muscles activated and prevent atrophy,” he says. How easy is it to put on?- Vokshoor recommends posture correctors that provide support as well as easily self-adjusting. Being able to wear a posture correct under or over clothes is also a key feature when choosing the right one for you. Where is the support?- Make sure you choose a product that fits your needs and targets the area you need the most support.
Healthline Recommended: BackEmbrace - Posture Corrector
Pros: Can be worn over clothing, attractive, and comfortable
Cons: Lack of plus sizes (max chest size is 39 inches and bra size 42 inches)
If your budget is on the higher end, consider the BackEmbrace posture corrector. Unlike so many posture correctors on the market, Vokshoor says BackEmbrace has uniquely adjusting straps that are extremely effective in retracting the shoulders. “The double strap provides a customized fit over patients’ shoulders, so there’s no pinching or chafing under the arms,” he says. You can wear this posture corrector under or over clothing, and the fabric is soft.