Your spine is the framework that keeps your body moving and functioning well.
It’s made up of 33 individual bones stacked on top of of each other.
In between each of the bones is a joint. That means that each segment of your spine is designed to move individually.
When you have the ability to keep your spine upright and well balanced, this creates room for blood flow, circulation, and general health.
When your spine gets compressed, stiff, and rounded over time, this compresses the rest of your body. It restricts blood flow, circulation and impairs the health of your entire body.
Why does your spine get so stiff?
It comes down to a lack of movement. Any joint in your body will get stiff if you dont use it, it just so happens that your spine has over 66 joints.
With this many joints we have a ton of potential for movement, but also a ton of potential for stiffness.
What’s the solution?
Move your spine throughout the day.
I know I may sound like a broken record, but consistent daily movment is the ultimate solution to any sort of joint stiffness or discomfort.
The more often you move throughout the day, the better you are going to feel.
Here are three exercises you add to your routine to get your shoulders moving again:
#1 Foam Roller T-Spine Extension
It is extremely important to follow the instruction that Tony Gentilcore is giving in this video.
One of the most common mistakes I see when someone is performing this exercise is not keeping the core engaged, avoiding rib flare.
When your ribs flare, you are promoting extension (arching) through your lower back. While thats not a problem on its’ own, for the purposes of this exercise, mobilizing your upper spine, allowing your lower back to arch doesn’t allow you to isolate and focus on your upper spine.
#2 Anterior/Posterior Pelvic Tilt
This is one of the best exercises for regaining control of your lower spine and pelvis.
Make sure you are going slow and controlled, working on feeling the movement and feeling those muscles of your lower and abdominals.
#3 Cat Cow (The Holy Grail of Spine Mobility)
Improving your ability to perform this exercise is almost guaranteed to improve the health and well-being of your spine.
This exercise involves moving your entire spine one segment at a time somewhat similarly to the wave.
Dr. Grayson Wickham does an awesome job demonstrating how much motion you can and should be able to get out of your spine.
Try taking a video of yourself doing this exercise, see how it looks, and consistently work at it to make progress.
Like most things that matter, it takes time and effort to see results, but it is always worth it in the end.
Conclusion: How are these working for you?
Are you feeling any better from doing these exercises? Does one work better for you than others?
Have any specific topics you’d like covered in a future article?
Let me know in the comments below!
Have questions about any new or recurring pain?
Request an appointment with Dr. Brink!
He is available for in-office and virtual appointments.
You don’t need to live in pain! Let us help you move well and pain-free.