Unlock your Thoracic spine!

Do it for better breathing, stability, and posture

The Core:

Most of the back saving exercises out there focus on the lower back region, but there is another region of the back that is widely overlooked: the Thoracic spine. 

Insight:

Your T-Spine is the region in the mid back between the cervical (neck) and lumbar (lower). It's main function is to support the rib cage as well as protect the heart and lungs. This means that pain or issues with your T-Spine will effect your breathing ability. Other issues with having a tweaked mid back include neck pain, stiff trapezius muscles, and tight pecs. 

Most T-Spine mobility drills involve stabilizing the legs and mobilizing the torso. Two of the most popular exercises include the side lying windmill and quadruped t-spine rotation

A much less popular, but equally effective way to target the T-Spine is to stabilize the torso and mobilize the legs. 

Prescription:

Before doing any T-Spine work, try this hack I stumbled upon last week...Barefoot full stride interval running. Getting to a full stride engages the whole body from head to toe and forces a slight rotation of the torso (bringing the T-spine into play). 

This is how it works:

Total of 30 minutes - 

4 minutes walking and 1 minute running at a pace that makes you maintain a full stride (5 minutes = 1 round). 

Repeat for 6 rounds. You can try to either maintain speed or improve each round. 

Video below is the final minute of the 6th round:

After completing the running, try this alternative T-Spine mobility drill. 

Grab a KB/DB and a yoga block/book/pillow. Lie on your back, bring both knees up to 90 degrees and place your item between your legs. Begin by rotating your legs to one side and breathing into your stomach. When you get to your sticking point take a breath in through your nose (filling your stomach) for 4 seconds and then exhale for 8 seconds. Go back up to the starting position and repeat to the other side.

See the video below:

 

Pairing these two exercises together will do wonders for your T-Spine. Give them a try and let us know what you think. 

#DITCHYOURSHOES

Be well,

Mike

Leave a comment