How do your arms spend most of the day? Quick, see if you can quickly scroll (get it?) through all the positions your arms will assume today. Chances are your arms aren’t coming even close to moving through all the ways your shoulder joints can move, but they need to be. This is from Chapter 7 (Mouse Hands to Monkey Arms) of Move Your DNA:
“The use of the arms is particularly important both to making our body more usable and to the maintenance of the body’s structure. Upper-body tone not only keeps the joints of the shoulders, elbows, and wrists stable and operating smoothly, optimal tension in this area is responsible for keeping the upper (thoracic) spine upright.”
We’ve got to get our arms moving around a heap more and this Ribcage Hug exercise is a simple way to begin.
Start by putting down the phone (you’re welcome). Then, give yourself a hug, working your hands as far behind you on your back as you can.
Relax the head forward and take 3-4 slow breaths. Work to make your ribcage get larger as you inhale, smaller on the exhale.
Next, lift your head and lift your elbows (keep the ribcage down) and breathe in this position a few times.
Repeat, crossing the other arm on top.
Finally, share this move with someone you love!
P.S. For even more shoulder movement, pair this with one of my shoulder favorites, the Thoracic Stretch.