56. Reading Skills Comprehension: POSTURE


 Read the following passage carefully:

        1      When you are making a presentation, your posture can affect the quality of your voice. The way you stand, the position of your head, neck and feet and shoulders and so on are important. Check that your feet are parallel and apart and your weight is slightly forward on your feet. Make sure that your knees are relaxed. If you are tense, your back will suffer. Pay special attention to your head. Look straight out and don’t push your neck out or to drop on to your chest. I had a man come to see me once as he was constantly losing his voice. it was all due to his habit of sticking his neck forward which was putting pressure on his throat. He sounded quite squeaky when he spoke. What he should have been doing is keeping his ears in line with his shoulders. Your head should feel as though it is floating on top of your body! So watch.

        2      Now most of us feel nervous before we speak in public. You will feel better if you spend some time dealing with this tension. It is good to try and think about what is it that is making you feel this way. That way you can have some control over it. Next, try to locate the area of tension in your body Often it’s your neck or shoulders. Then concentrate on massaging these parts and consciously trying to relax them. Believe me, it works!

        3      To maximize your performance make sure you are well prepared. Look over your notes. practice what you want to say, preferably out loud. and then, perhaps most important of all, try to feel you really want to share your subject with your audience. If you feel and share your enthusiasm with them, you’re more than half-way there

       4      Remember that how people feel about you and what you are saying to them will depend on your body language There are three main behaviour types passive, aggressive and assertive You can use any of these types. although I think the assertive posture is one that suits most occasions best

1. Read the given questions and write the answer in about 30-40 words.

(a) What are the points one needs to keep in mind while making a presentation’

(b) Who came to see the writer and what was his problem?

(c) How can one overcome nervousness while speaking in public?

 (d) How can a presenter win over the audience’

2. Choose the word which is closest in meaning to the words given below.

 (a) Sticking

(i) to put together                                     (ii) to put forward

(iii) to break into                                      (iv) to slip out

(b) locate

(i) to find out                                             (ii) to search

(iii) to exactly pinpoint the spot         (iv) to look for

(c) maximize

(i) to get the best                                     (ii) to increase

(iii) to make bigger                                (iv) to reduce

(d) enthusiasm

(i) sadness                                                (ii) happiness

(iii) fear                                                    (iv) excitement


1.(a) The most important thing is posture because posture can affect voice quality. The way one stands, the position of head, neck and feet and shoulders.

(b) A man once came to see the writer and he was constantly losing his voice. This was because he had the habit of sticking his neck forward which was putting pressure on his throat.

(c) Firstly one needs to spend some time dealing with the tension and finding out the reason for stress. Then one has to locate the area in the body which is the cause of tension. Then massage these parts and try to relax.

(d) A presenter needs to be well-prepared, should go through the notes and make the audience a part of the session. That way their enthusiasm will be kept alive and this will take the tension away from the presenter.

2.(a) (ii)                               (b) (iii)                   (c) (i)                    (d) (iv)

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