Thoracic mobility is a popular topic. It’s now common knowledge that we need proper thoracic mobility for squats, deadlifts and overhead movement, among others. We see thoracic extension work being done quite a bit, but for the more kyphotic individual, working into thoracic extension can be quite aggressive. This is where the relationship between breathing and spine mobility can be quite useful. If you are working with an individual who has more of a rounded upper back type of posture, you can work breathing into your mobilization strategy to facilitate extension. With every breath we take comes a natural mobilization of the spine, moving into extension with the inhale and flexion with the exhale. Try integrating breathing prior to thoracic extension or even thoracic rotation mobility exercises.
Breathing from the Child’s pose, a classic Yoga pose, is helpful because the position forces you to breathe deep into the posterior thorax and abdomen. Using this breathing position prior to a classic thoracic extension exercise can be really helpful. Another important tip is to cue the extension with the inhale, making efficient use of the natural movement of the spine with breath. Watch now to find out how to integrate this with your clients or in your own mobility and prep work!