Apologize To Your Back

It feels good to be back blogging!  I have been transitioning to a new job in higher education and am loving it (ie. up to my eyeballs but enjoying every minute of it). What I have not been loving the last few weeks is dealing with physical therapy.  Like my readers, I do not like to slow down.  In the process of going to physical therapy, I was told by my good friend Karen to “apologize to my back”.  Huh?  Come again?

She went on to explain that we spend so much of our day in a flexed position:  sitting hunched in the car, on a computer, at our desk at work, that we (myself included) develop very poor posture. Then we go exercise and do even more flexion based exercises that focus on strengthening our front.  I call these “push” exercises.  This includes things like the bench press, push ups, even abdominal crunches.  This can very easily create an imbalance without us even realizing it.  So, I have been spending some time working on my posture, apologizing to my back, and increasing the mobility of my thoracic spine.  Specifically these are good to do at the end of the day or at the end of an exercise session. It’s basically the equivalent of “apologizing to your back” and working to get it back to the anatomical position that we want it to be.

This may not be for everyone, but it’s a concept that I wanted to share as a preventative measure to consider with yourself or with clients.  Obviously medical history and physical ability must be considered, but for many these basic movements could be very helpful.  Here are a few of my favorite exercises to close out a workout or day with:

1.  Hip flexor stretch

2.  Thoracic spine extension over a foam roller

3.  Press ups

Here is a great article with some additional ideas for working on throacic spine mobility.

3 thoughts

  1. It’s so easy to ‘slump’ at the computer. I try to stay mindful of my posture but find it slips shortly after I stop focusing on it. I’ve gotten in the habit of getting up and stretching throughout the day, focusing on the back too, I completely agree with your statement on ‘push’ exercise. I’m often trying to get rid of lower back pain so I’ll have to try these exercises out.

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