Strengthen the Core Through Spinal Articulation
Lower back pain is one of the most common complaints I hear about in my Pilates practice. Sitting in a chair, desk or car all day only exacerbates the problem. It makes sense when a specific part of the spine is not carefully stretched that the vertebrae becomes compressed and immobile. Just like any other muscle in the body, it is important to keep our spine healthy and out of pain by stretching the muscle through spinal articulation. Aside from increasing mobility in the spine, spinal articulation actually feels wonderful as it massages the spinal extensors (muscles in the vertebrae that keep you standing upright), while simultaneously stimulating the nerves between the vertebrae. It’s such a simple movement which has so many benefits. Spinal articulation also helps to strengthen your core, another reason why it's so important. A tight back can inhibit the development of your abdominal muscles, as the spine is actually considered the backside of your core. If you are unable to articulate a certain section of your spine, you may notice a direct correlation to that part of your abdominals which are weak. For example, if your lower back, or lumbar spine is immobile you more than likely will have a hard time strengthening your lower abdominals. Get your spine healthy and your abs strong this summer with this very easy and relaxing move!
•Do not try this exercise if you have osteoporosis or serious back concerns.
Start laying on your back with your feet hip-distant part and your feet flat on the floor under your sitz bones (the two bones under your pelvis). Breath in and lift your hips. As you breath out slowly roll down the spine one vertebrae at a time, starting in-between your shoulder blades and ending at your tail bone. Reverse it by tucking the pelvis and tail bone and roll up one vertebrae at a time to the shoulder blades. Keeping your hips lifted, stay there and breath in, and as you breath out slowly roll down one vertebrae at a time to your tail bone, ending flat on your back. Repeat 5 times.