Upper body mobility is important for maintaining independence. The full rotation of your upper body, enables you to perform everyday movements including putting your shirt, or socks, reaching for something in the back seat of the car, bathing, putting away groceries, or participating in any sport.
Without torso rotation, your functioning, performance, and independence would be greatly limited. Exercising the internal and external obliques is a one way to strengthen and increase the range of motion throughout your torso.
The obliques are long flat muscles that attach to the pelvis and ribs. These muscles work to pull the ribs towards the pelvis in a variety of ways that create a unique twisting motion. The obliques also help with breathing by moving the diaphragm and creating room to take a breath. These muscles are important to keep strong and exercises like the one shown in the video above are a great place to start.
When completing the exercise in the video it is important to remember to isolate the torso, make sure that the hips are steady, and that the shoulders only follow along with the movement rather than creating the movement. This will help reduce stiffness and increase flexibility through your core.
Remember, a flexible torso allows us to grab our seat belt in the car, twist in the shower to wash, roll over in bed, swing a golf club, or to swim at the beach more easily. Working on and maintaining torso strength and flexibility promotes independence and active participation in daily activities.
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