A lack of thoracic spine mobility means that the lumbar spine, pelvis, shoulders and surrounding muscles all compensate to allow you to move how you want to move. Long term, those compensations can lead to stiffness, strain, pain and injury.
What causes thoracic immobility? Immobility.
As a society we aren’t moving very much. We’re sitting in cars, sitting (or standing!) at a desk, waiting in line and watching Netflix. When we are moving it often looks the same: walking, running, spinning, skiing,...
These activities are wonderful for our health, but they all happen in the same plane of motion. We need our spine to move every which way, not just forward and back.
Spinal Twists to Improve Mobility Part 1 will help you find ease in everyday movement.
When the thoracic spine is able to move, the rest of the body focuses on the tasks at hand instead compensating for missing mobility.
Let's Get Started:
Start by sitting up straight in a comfortable crossed-legged position.
Take your right hand over to your left knee, and your right hand to the floor by your side.
Sit up tall, and then twist towards your left.
Return to center and switch your hand position. Grow tall towards the ceiling, and twist to the right. You can go back and forth as fast or as slow as you’d like.
Lie down on your back with your feet on the floor knees pointing up towards the ceiling. Have your arms off to the side and as much as you can, and keep your shoulder blades evenly weighted on the floor
Drop your knees over to one side, and then reach through that lifted hip and pull your pelvis back up to center. Your legs will drag up behind the pelvis, and then drop to the other side.
Keep the legs heavy, and keep the movement coming from your oblique muscles.
Lie on your side, with your knees bent. Make sure your hips, knees, and feet are all stacked.
Reach your top arm up high towards the ceiling, and slowly rotate back to the wall behind you. Then rotate back to your starting position.
Next time you rotate see if you can go a little further while keeping your hips stacked. Repeat 6 to 7 times on each side.