Finding the Middle Ground and then Moving it!

Stiff upper back

3 Easy stretches to improve a stiff Thoracic Spine

‘I have another headache from sitting at the computer too long’

‘I have that tightness in between my shoulder blades again’

‘I can’t believe how sore my back is from half an hour in the garden, I feel like I am a hundred years old’

Do any of these comments sound familiar? Possibly muttered to yourself on occasion?

Now is a good time to discuss your thoracic spine mobility, which may be contributing to your symptoms.

thoracic spine

Your thoracic spine is the longest part of the spine.

Due to the rib attachments and shape of the spinal joints in this area, your thoracic spine can tighten up quite quickly. This in turn may effect how you move, your posture and your breathing patterns!!

Imagine you are sitting at your desk working on your computer all morning. You start with an excellent upright posture, back straight and head tall. Over the first hour you start to slouch a little. By lunchtime, your muscles are so fatigued you are fully slouched, with your chin poking forwards and head tilting up to look at the monitor. I am sure you can picture it now.

In this position, you compress the joints and muscles in the upper part of the neck, which in turn can lead to referred headaches!!

Don’t despair, I have 3 very easy tips to help keep you moving and comfortable throughout the day.

1/ Bow and Arrow stretches which can be done sitting in the chair. You don’t even have to get up!


bow and arrow stretch

2/ Side stretches – again sitting in the chair!

side stretch

3/ Rolling over a tennis ball, spiky ball or foam roller.

foam roller back

Of course, these are 3 easy mobility exercises to perform and incorporate into your day. Like all parts of the body, there are many more stretches you can do depending on your exact presentation.

If you are experiencing headaches, pain in between the shoulder blades or your lower back, and unsure if these exercises are right for you, book a time online to see one of our friendly Leading Edge Physiotherapists today.