Flexibility Friday – Stretch Those Lats!

Whether you spend hours each day sitting at a desk, standing in front of a classroom, painting houses or running from place to place taking care of a never-ending to-do list, chances are your back tends to get tight. That tension often specifically targets the latissimus dorsi, more commonly referred to as “the lats.”  Add some poor posture to the mix of daily activity and your lats can really start screaming for some TLC.

So on this Flexibility Friday, I offer one of my all-time favorite stretches for this sore spot: the static latissimus dorsi ball stretch.

  1. The prep: Kneel in front of the stability ball with one arm on the ball and the other hand on the ground. (Training tip: For the arm that’s on the ball, make sure your thumb is pointed up.)
  2. The move: Draw your navel upward and reach forward with the arm that’s on the ball. You will feel a stretch along the side of your torso into the lower back.
  3. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds. Return to start position, switch sides and repeat.

Photos by Lauren Bachner

For an active variation on this stretch, you would prepare for and execute the stretch the same way. However, once you reach your arm forward, hold the stretch for 2 seconds, then roll back to the start and repeat for 5-10 reps. Switch sides and repeat.

I know it’s a recurring theme here at LauraLovesFitness, but I simply can’t stress enough the importance of flexibility training  in any fitness program. Taking care of those tight muscles is a surefire way to have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

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About LauraLovesFitness

After spending more than 10 years in the communications industry, this lifetime fitness lover and newly certified fitness professional wants to share my passion for health and well-being with others.

Posted on March 2, 2012, in Fitness, Health and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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