Today I show you an exercise that will take years off the way you feel (and look!) because it strengthens the muscles in the mid-back to improve your posture.
I also share with you a fascinating study that confirms why working these specific muscle groups prevents kyphosis (Dowager’s Hump) and reduces vertebral fractures – including the dreaded vertebral compression fractures.
This easy yet effective exercise is called The Middle Back Strengthener, and you can easily do it while simply sitting in a chair.
Building a strong back means targeting the muscles that support the spine and torso, and The Middle Back Strengthener does just that.
Interestingly, the participants (aged 47 to 84) in the study I mentioned earlier did not engage in “unusually demanding physical activities”1 – so simple exercises like The Middle Back Strengthener are highly effective.
Researchers evaluated the physical activity of each participant, and discovered a “negative association between back extensor strength and both kyphosis and number of vertebral fractures,”1 and went on to say that “increasing back strength may prove to be an effective therapeutic intervention for the osteoporotic spine. In persons with stronger back muscles, the risk of vertebral fractures will likely decrease.”1
The researchers studied the strength of the back extensor muscles, which run along each side of the spine. The Middle Back Strengthener targets these muscles.
In addition, today’s exercise works the Latissimus dorsi, or “lats,” which spread out in an approximate triangle shape with the wide part of the triangle across your shoulders. They come down and attach between the 6th and 12th vertebrae, so they are right in the area that needs to be flattened to improve posture and prevent kyphosis.
You will need a small pair of weights (or even soup cans) to do The Middle Back Strengthener.
- Sit on the edge of a chair or bench with your feet flat on the floor.
- Sit up straight with your chest slightly lifted. Imagine the top of your head being drawn up to the ceiling. (This alone feels great for your neck and spine!)
- Bend your elbows up at 90-degree angles and hold your weights over the tops of your thighs. Your palms should be facing each other (the backs of your hands will be facing outward).
- Keeping your elbows and upper arms against your body, slowly swing your hands out and back, contracting your shoulder blades.
- Bring your hands back to the starting position and repeat 8 times (you can do more or less as you feel comfortable).
Follow Up With The Forward Shoulder Corrector
I love to practice the exercises that work my upper back. They relieve tension and discomfort in mere minutes.
That’s why I like to follow up The Middle Back Strengthener with The Forward Shoulder Corrector. Both exercises work similar areas of the back, so you can tackle poor posture, vertebral density, and kyphosis from multiple angles.
Remember, There Is No Need To Fear Fractures… If You’re Proactive About Avoiding Them!
I know that fear can be an aspect of osteoporosis, especially if your doctor has told you ridiculous horror stories about people breaking bones from simply sneezing or coughing.
But instead of being afraid, take action!
When you do exercises like The Middle Back Strengthener and those found in The Densercise™ Epidensity Training System, you will find a wide variety of moves to fit your activity and comfort levels. Many of the “Densercises” also target the upper and middle back, giving you even more options for building back muscles and staving off the dreaded vertebral fractures.
And you’ll have the peace of mind that comes with knowing you are being proactive about taking action to rejuvenate your bones and improve your posture (which in itself gives you a more youthful look!).
With Densercise™, you can give yourself the gifts of confidence, better posture, and no fear of fractures this holiday season!
Till next time,
1 Sinaki, Mehrsheed, et al. “Can Strong Back Extensors Prevent Vertebral Fractures in Women With Osteoporosis?” Mayo Clinic Proceedings. October 1996. Vol 71, Issue 10, Pages 951-956. Web. https://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196%2811%2963768-3/pdf