kyphosis exercises can help a great deal in overcoming this deformity, continue reading, for some effective exercises to correct kyphosis.
Kyphosis is an abnormal rounding of the thoracic spine, the part of the spine that connects to the ribcage. It can be caused by arthritis, injury, osteoporosis, or it can be congenital. For types that don’t need surgery, such as postural kyphosis, exercise can treat the curvature and relieve pain. A qualified physical therapist can design a regimen of effective exercises for kyphosis, often including Pilates, yoga, and other flexibility and strengthening moves. Before beginning any exercise program, it is wise to seek clearance from a medical professional so injury does not aggravate or worsen any condition.
Postural kyphosis results from contracting the back and shoulder muscles over time in a forward rounded position. People who hunch over their desks for long periods of time or exhibit poor overall posture can develop kyphosis. Pilates is an effective of exercises for kyphosis caused by poor posture, since it strengthens the core muscles that hold the body in alignment. The abdominals are highly engaged, reducing hyperlordosis, the inward curve of the lower back that sometimes accompanies postural kyphosis. In addition, stretching and strengthening the upper back and chest muscles releases tension and enables a more erect posture, lessening the hunched effect.
Exercises performed with your back against a wall will not only help to improve your postural kyphosis, but they also will provide you with feedback as to how straight your back really is. Stand with your feet about 12 inches away from the wall and let the knees bend slightly. Try to touch your buttocks, upper back and back of the head to the wall. You can also stand in the same position, make the letter “W” with your hands and arms and try to touch your elbows and back of the hands to the wall as well. By using the wall for feedback, you can track your progress over time.
Exercises with Weights
Performing exercises with weights while standing, seated or lying on your stomach on a bench or on the floor is also helpful in strengthening your postural muscles. Movements such as bent rows, straight arm lifts (on the stomach) and pullbacks can all build strong muscles in your upper back.
One of the best ways to treat excess lordosis is yoga. Yoga is centered around the health of the entire spine and nearly every pose strengthens and lengthens the spine. Specifically, you should practice poses that open the chest and help keep the shoulders from rounding forward. Poses that lift the neck and lengthen through the front of the neck are best to counteract the effects of lordosis. Poses such as Fish Pose, Locust Pose, and Cobra Pose open up the front of the neck and chest.
Basic Chest Stretches
To help manage your postural kyphosis it is important to take breaks throughout the day and correct your posture. This is especially true if you spend long periods at a desk or computer or other activity that encourages you to round your shoulders forward. A good rule is to change your posture every 20 to 30 minutes. Take a quick break and do a chest stretch, shoulder rolls, arch your back and move around a bit keeping your shoulders down and your back straight. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends working with a physical therapist who can help you learn to work and move in ways that will prevent your kyphosis from getting worse and hopefully correct the problem as well.
This exercise is perfect for the upper back, shoulders and biceps, all at once. While performing this exercise, keep your hands close together and rehearse a short range of motion to obtain the most effective and safest shoulder workout. Stand together with your feet shoulder-width apart and retain the weights waist high together with your palms turning inward. Pull the weights up, until they touch the chest area, while your elbows bending. Keep the waist straight and your elbows over the shoulder, while performing the exercise.