Back Extension with Shoulder Y, T, I on Stability Ball
Unfortunately, our modern lifestyles are wreaking havoc on our posture, and this is creating all sorts of injuries including neck and low back problems that can become quite serious overtime. We spend lots of times hunched over a computer, our cell phones, watching TV, and driving cars. This results in chronic shortening of key muscles like the hip flexors, forward neck flexors, and chest muscles with chronic weakness and lengthening in posterior muscles of the neck, shoulder and back.
One of the best single corrective exercises to help balance out much of this dysfunction is doing a back extension on a stability ball. The stability ball allows us to perform the exercise without having to lay all the way down on the floor and provides a comfortable surface for our hips and abdomen to brace into while also providing a bit of instability to force our muscles to compensate.
Start by laying on the ball with you hips and lower abdomen with legs straight and feet on the ground while allowing the upper body to fold around the ball. Start by lifting your upper body while lifing your arms into a Y position while straight as if you were superman. Pause in this position.
NOTE: Keep your chin tucked slightly so you are not hyperextending your neck.
Then rotate your arms down towards your sides into a T-Position and pause here. Keep your shoulders back and pulled down towards your low back the entire time.
Next rotate your arms so the thumbs are pointing up initiating the movement from the shoulder not the arm or wrist.
Keeping your thumbs up move your arms down to your side and pause.
Release your body forward and repeat for 5 – 10 repetitions. For a great video tutorial on performing Y, T, and I movements with back extension check this out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VkQ_wtU6foo or this one with some light added dumbbells: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MorP7xmdOac