Did you know that improving your mid-back mobility may help your lower back pain?
Caroline describes some great exercises that can help to get you moving!
We know that sedentary lifestyles are having adverse effects on people’s general health & wellbeing. Recent studies have even shown a link between the amount of time spent sitting and a reduction in how long we live! Sitting is particularly problematic for the thoracic spine – the area of your mid-back associated with your ribcage. Surprisingly, reduced thoracic spine mobility has been linked to long-standing low back pain (Mellin G, Spine, 1987). So besides limiting your sitting time and taking regular breaks, what else can you do to improve your thoracic spine mobility?
Here are some simple exercises you can do during the day, to help improve your thoracic spine movement:
- Lie on your side with both knees bent to 90 degrees, bringing both hands together 90 degrees away from your body
- As you take a breath in lift your top arm up
- Breath out and open your arm and body toward the other direction as far as you can
- As you breathe in, return your arm to the starting position
- Then breathe out and allow it to rest
- Repeat 5 times, then change sides
- Start in a kneeling position on all fours with your hands directly beneath shoulders and knees in line with hips
- As you breathe in, arch your mid back up like a cat
- As you breathe out drop middle of your back down like a cow
- Repeat slowly 10 times
Standing Side Bend:
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, arms straight up above your head with the palms of your hands facing each other
- Take a deep breath in and gently lift and side bend to one side, breathing out as you stretch further to that side
- Then breathe in as you return to the starting position
- Breathe out and stretch up towards the sky
- Breathe in and lean towards the other side, breathing out as you bend further to that side
- Breathe in as you return to your starting position, breathing out to rest
- Repeat 5 times each side
By Caroline Viner
*Thanks to Cat and Mel for showing us how it's done!