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Lawrence "Bo" Boland III
01-21-2010, 08:18 AM
I wanted to see if anyone out there has overcame, over the course of time, poor thoracic mobility? Specifically, did you have a slightly rounded upper back (kyphosis maybe?)?

I offer to you a video of my recent Deadlift PR, at 382.5lbs. Please note my upper back before even lifting. Granted, there isn't a good view of me simply standing straight up, but you can see the slight curvature. Also, when in the starting position, I'm very much pushing my chest out as much as possible. (I'm sure I'll get some people commenting on form, but I'm more questioning my posture/mobility)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rg68bGdnrWE

Since seeing this video, and knowing that I have crappy posture, I researched and found that thoracic mobility could be the issue. (Also note: I can't properly execute a front rack position, which may be because of this too). I tried this set of exercises for the first time last night and it felt wonderful. It was like I had Gumby's spine afterwards.

http://stronglifts.com/how-to-improve-your-thoracic-mobility/

(I fail the "test" on the first picture. I'm easily 6-8 inches short of the floor with my wrists).

Summary Question: How long does such a thoracic flexibility regime take to see some results? 3months? 6 months? Maybe a year?

I'm going to continue this for the foreseeable future, and see how it goes.

Craig Brown
01-21-2010, 08:37 AM
You should se some results fast but overall, it's going to take time. I'd approach both the things you found with an overall postural program. I like Esther Gokhale's approach, and her book is cheap. Basically you'll need to get the mobilty back and correct the posture so it staus that way. Takes time to make this a habit.

http://egwellness.com/

Craig

Lawrence "Bo" Boland III
01-21-2010, 04:33 PM
Thanks for the suggestion Craig. I had a gift card to Barnes&Noble from Christmas and I just ordered her book along with Primal Blueprint (been meaning to get that lately).

I'm hoping to see some positive results this year and hopefully won't be a hunchback anymore ;)

Garrett Smith
01-21-2010, 05:03 PM
Those stretches will help, as will the more "passive" foam roller mobilizations...however, the most important thoracic mobility work is YOU actually learning how to flex and extend your thoracic spine actively.

Lawrence "Bo" Boland III
01-21-2010, 05:34 PM
Those stretches will help, as will the more "passive" foam roller mobilizations...however, the most important thoracic mobility work is YOU actually learning how to flex and extend your thoracic spine actively.

Dr G, are you reiterating the point that I need to learn correct posture, or are you saying that I ned to learn how to flex my spine during exercise movements? If the latter, how do you"learn" such a thing?

Brian Stone
01-21-2010, 06:21 PM
Bo, note also that Esther has a Authors@Google video with a ton of info. You might be able to pull some tips out of here, although it seems to focus more on people that spend a great deal of time behind a desk, which may or may not apply to you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yYJ4hEYudE

Your mileage may vary.

Garrett Smith
01-21-2010, 07:13 PM
Dr G, are you reiterating the point that I need to learn correct posture, or are you saying that I ned to learn how to flex my spine during exercise movements? If the latter, how do you"learn" such a thing?
Well, I guess it is both.

Posture is more of a static thing, whereas gaining active mobility in the thoracic region is very important for things like overhead and front squatting (which aren't done in "normal" posture).

There are some thoracic glide videos on this guy's channel:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntP7_EVcgrk&NR=1

Robb Wolf's PMenu article on kyphosis:
http://cathletics.com/articles/index.php?show=shorty&shortyID=33&searchTerms=kyphosis

I second the Gokhale book. I hope to make it to her upcoming Tucson seminar in May.

Steven Low
01-21-2010, 08:03 PM
Foam roll yourself with one or two 45s on your chest and arch your t-spine.

That should help out real fast.

Then work on proper posture.

Lawrence "Bo" Boland III
01-22-2010, 05:12 AM
LOL @ Steven. I'll give that a try.

Thanks all... I'll report back in a few months with some sort of progress report.

Off to find some more threads in this forum that I used to not visit much :)

Ben Moskowitz
01-22-2010, 08:42 AM
Foam roll yourself with one or two 45s on your chest and arch your t-spine.

That should help out real fast.


Hmm good idea. Kelly Starrett's "Hip Prep" video in the CFJ includes some movements that work thoracic mobility, it's a pretty good video.

Steven Low
01-22-2010, 06:34 PM
Hmm good idea. Kelly Starrett's "Hip Prep" video in the CFJ includes some movements that work thoracic mobility, it's a pretty good video.
I've never had a CFJ subscription, so I'll take your word for it.

Starrett's stuff is pretty good in general.