Thoracic Spine Mobility

foam-roll-thoracic-spine2Your thoracic spine starts just below your neck and continues to the level just above your belly button.  It consists of 12 vertebrae and also articulates with all 12 sets of your ribs.  Although I never want to only focus on a single area of the body, movement here is crucial.

When talking about correcting bad posture, focusing on reversing the posture that you assume for the majority of your day is key.  Think about being hunched over your computer all day.  By putting emphasis on restoring that joint motion will help with the negative effects of prolonged sitting.

Adequate movement in the thoracic spine is essential for overhead athletes (among many other things).  For the shoulder to function properly the position of the thoracic spine is important  The best position is tall and extended, which requires the joints to be mobile to get there.

Here are two exercises to improve thoracic spine mobility.

Level 1- Seated Thoracic Mobilization

While sitting in a chair, place a rolled up towel behind your mid-back.  Pull your left knee toward your chest.  With your hands behind your head, stretch backward by extending at the spine over the towel.  Hold for three seconds and relax.  Repeat 8-10 times.

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Level 2- Foam Roll Thoracic Extension

Lie with your upper back across foam roll.  Bride up so only your feet are on the ground.  Gently lean back over the foam roll while you roll the foam roller over a 4-5 inch section of your thoracic spine.  Return to the start position.  Repeat 8-10 times.

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For more information contact Shaw Chiropractic & Sports Injury Center at (515) 987-6332 or visit our website at www.shawchiroandsport.com.

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