Week One, Day Three: Back Extension
Do you want to stand straighter and feel taller? If so, consider back extensions a go-to exercise in your traveler wellness program. Keep a ‘neutral’ spine during this exercise. Neutral means to maintain the natural curvatures of the spine, rather than exaggerating at the cervical spine by craning the neck, or failing to extend the lumbar, or lower spine, during the movement.
Start Position: Start flat on your stomach, legs extended behind you, chest, arms and hands resting on the floor. Flex your toes toward your knees and lift the backs of your knees toward the sky, straightening the legs and clearing the thighs from the floor. The legs will stay in this active position throughout the movement. Inhale.
Extend the Back: Exhale and lift the head, chest, arms and hands away from the floor, keeping your eyes facing slightly in front of the edge of your mat. Do not look up toward the sky. Return to the start position and repeat 12 – 15 times.
Imagine initiating the movement from the hips, as if your back was a door that swung around the hinge of the hip socket. The back moves as one unit rather than multiple parts.