Postural Realignment: Lying on Left Side

When our posture gets off-center, the diaphragm muscle on the left needs more help getting into a relaxed, or “domed” state. Lying down on your left side will help relax the left diaphragm (from the body weight pushing down on it) and draw more air into the right lung (which helps realign the rib cage). One way to help adjust your hips and rib cage back to a more neutral position is by lying on your left side on your bed, couch or carpet, and breathing deeply in the following steps: ​

This technique is for LEFT SIDE LYING ONLY.

Lying down - left side

1. Both pictures and techniques are the same, but for some it may be more comfortable to put a small pillow between the knees.

2. Slightly flex your right knee over, and in front of, your left knee. The left leg will be in a straighter position under the right. You should feel a small rotation to the left in your pelvis by letting the top of your right hip lean/rotate forward.

3. Comfortably raise your right arm over your head to increase airflow into the right lung. If you can’t get the shoulder up that high, use a pillow in front of your chest to rest the arm on. This will still allow for better air movement into the right lung.

4. Take a deep breath in THROUGH YOUR NOSE, feeling the air fill your lungs and let the inhalation move down toward your low back. WHILE BREATHING IN, stretch your right arm gently over the top of your head, (or over the pillow in front of your chest due to shoulder constraints).

5. Hold the arm in position as you BREATHE ALL THE WAY OUT (AS FAR AS YOU CAN GO), and hold it out. Count to 3 seconds then inhale. Repeat steps 4-5 for ten breaths.

Lying down - Left side