We've been talking a lot about back core strength this month. While you're busy working your back pack, keep in mind that optimal posture depends on both back core strength and front body flexibility (amongst other things). More specifically: You need to keep your chest limber so that your upper back muscles can effectively do their job of keeping your shoulder blades in their home back there, rather than rounding forward. Since most of the things we do flex (or round) our upper body forward, "un-flexing" the front bod with tactics like chest stretching is critical for bringing things back into balance.

The best thing about this week's Reset is that it's quick, energizing, and has a legit effect on your posture, especially when you lace up to run or head out to ride. Plus, maintaining spaciousness across your chest can increase your breath capacity and, ultimately, your endurance. Do it anytime, anywhere, in a minute or less...

Photo: Claire Pepper

Chest Expansion

  • Bring your hands to your low back and interlace your fingers—if that’s not possible, rest your hands on your low back with your fingers pointing toward the floor.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades toward each other and move your elbows closer together so you feel your chest broaden.
  • Feel the stretch across the front of your chest and the fronts of your shoulders as your shoulder blades continue to move toward each other.
  • Hold for 5+ deep breaths, using your breathing to deepen the stretch, as if you’re trying to puff up your chest with each inhale.

For more ways to keep your upper body in balance to optimize your posture for sports and life, hit up our Upper Body Reset video.

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