By Elizabeth Towe
The first thing we can do to reduce incident of injury is begin to be more mindful each day of achieving optimal posture. Explore the position of your skeleton that will minimize the strain, especially on your spine. The most common culprit that we can easily begin to shift is rounded shoulders, most likely from seated task work. Imagine what we ask our body to do; sit at a computer or continue persistent seated position from car and air travel for business. Then we jump on a bike or throw on running shoes and put demand on a strained, short, tight system.
We want to begin to strengthen postural muscles by addressing the muscles that hold the shoulder in a neutral position. We need to unwind the rounded shoulder posture.
This shoulder “T” will also helps create spinal strength, stability and holding upright posture in running and maintain long, neutral spine for cycling, swimming.
I challenge you to find your strongest, tallest self.
- Begin by laying face down with a small towel rolled under your forehead to keep the head and neck in line with the spine.
- Feet are in standing position (toes on the ground), arms out to the side with thumbs up towards the sky—forming the letter “T’. Roll the shoulder blades back and down towards the pelvis.
- Gently brace the core, and initiate the movement by sliding the shoulder blades towards the spine, which will lift the arms up off of the ground (thumbs towards the ceiling).
- Hold the lifted position for 1 second and lower the arms to the start position.
- Repeat 10-15 times for 2-3 sets.
- For an increased core challenge try this prone on the stability ball.
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Elizabeth Towe is a runner and a cyclist and the owner of Balanced Movement Studio in Carrboro. She graduated from East Carolina with a degree in exercise and sports science and has been personal training for over 20 years. Her ultimate goal for all of her clients is to help them realize and achieve the optimal quality in their life – and to remember to have fun doing it.