Even if you don’t experience back pain now, it may only be a matter of time, or one wrong move while getting up out of your chair that causes you some real discomfort.
By sitting for prolonged periods of time (at the office, on a plane, in the car, etc.) we are essentially keeping our entire core area in a shut off state. This can then lead to what is better known as “lower crossed syndrome”.
LCS consists of 4 dysfunctions: tight hip flexor muscles, tight lower back muscles, weak abdominal muscles, and weak gluteal muscles.
You may not notice all four of these in your everyday life, but chances are, if you suffer from one of the four dysfunctions stated above, you could use some work in all four areas. The following is a quick corrective circuit that can be done in a matter of minutes, everyday, to improve your overall core health.
Complete the following circuit 3 times through, as a stand alone corrective circuit, or as correctives during your rest period between bigger lifts.
1. Tight Lower Back: foam roll the lower back slowly and with decent pressure on the muscles. Make sure to move slow, stop on a knot, and breathe deep – then move the roller another few millimeters. Complete for 1 to 3 minutes, depending on how tight the back is.
2. Weak abs: hold a front plank for 15-30 seconds. Focus on squeezing the belly button in, pinching the butt cheeks tight, and pulling your shoulders down, and back. Think about forcefully contracting all the muscles below your neck as hard as possible. If someone were to come and try to push you over, you shouldn’t budge.
3. Tight Hip Flexors: get in a half kneeling position. Which ever leg is back, squeeze that glute hard, and push your hips forward. Make sure you aren’t tilting forward with the hips, but rather tilting the hips slightly upward. Pretend like you have a big ol’ belt buckle on and you are trying to tilt it towards your chest. Reach overhead for a bigger stretch.
4: Weak Glutes: lay on your back and drive your hips toward the ceiling while pushing through your heels. The goal is to create a straight line from your knees to your shoulders. Squeeze the glutes HARD, like the great Dean Somerset says, “crack some walnuts”. Hold the contraction for 1-5 seconds, for 10 repetitions.
There you have it, 4 quick things you can do TODAY, to help improve posture, and relieve some chronic pain you may be experiencing. Stay healthy!