What the heck does, ‘don’t pop the ribs’ mean? Do I mean not to pop them like a balloon? Well not exactly!! The ribs insert into the spine. The thoracic spine is the upper part of the back.
If you check out the image of Regulus our studio skeleton.
Notice how the ribs are in line with the pelvis. The spine, when the ribs are in this position is what is called a neutral spine. There is a natural curve to the thoracic spine.
When the term “popping the ribs” or “thrusting the ribs”is used this means the ribs are pushing forwards in front of the pelvis and the thoracic spine is flat. What is happening is you are physically pushing the bottom of your rib cage out in front of you. Which can lead to upper back pain and abdominals that are no longer working efficiently, due to moving the ribs away from the pelvis, day-in-day-out. Your core is unable to switch on when you keep moving these muscle attachments away from one another.
The human skeleton should be aligned so that the front of the ribs actually sits flush with the front of the pelvis. Think vertical line!
If you catch yourself slumping or slouching, whether it’s seated or standing, do you automatically lift up your chest to accommodate and re-align yourself?
Or perhaps a parent/teacher/significant person in your life may have said one of these phrases:
“Sit up straight!”“Stop slouching!”“Stand up taller!”“Pull your shoulders back”
Maybe you are getting pain in the upper back between the shoulders and compensating by pulling your shoulders back…
When you pop your ribcage out in front of you on a regular basis, believing it looks better for your overall posture, you’re effectively closing the space at the back of your rib cage which:
Makes it harder to get oxygen into your lungs and breathe optimallyDoesn’t allow your spinal cord to properly lengthenANDCan be a contributing factor to the cause and rehabilitation of abdominal separation
Go back up and look at Regulus the skeleton again….go on take a long hard look at it. From the side view, Regulus skeleton IS aligned with:
Ear on shoulder
Shoulder on rib,
Rib on pelvis,
Pelvis on ankle
I hope this helps, next time you re-align use the above alignment points to help you address the basic improvement of posture.
If you are pre/post natal and experiencing pain between your shoulder blades or any other area. Book a bundle of 3 x 1-1 sessions and I will help to address strengthening and releasing these muscles.
If you sit at a desk all day, I can come to your office and offer simple exercises to do throughout the day to counter balance sitting with a Desk Energiser session.