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Reverse and Prevent Slouching

In order to have healthy joints as we age, it's essential that we actively take our major joints through their full range of motion every day.

Ideally, we want to work our way up to actively taking our joints through their full range with a little resistance, as our joints were designed to carry out tasks that require some strength through their natural range of motion.

Whether at home or on the road, I strive to take my shoulders through this short and simple daily routine that keeps my shoulders and thoracic spinal region highly functional - this simple routine, done 2-3 times daily with a light resistance band, is my best practical solution for those wishing to reverse or prevent slouching.

Why do this multiple times a day? Because our tissues are never in a static state, and after about the age of 25, all of us experience ongoing degenerative changes that occur while living under gravitational force and with everyday oxidative stressors. To have healthy joints for as long as possible requires that we regularly combat these natural degenerative forces.

When we prioritize taking care of our joints, we naturally optimize the length of our tissues. Put another way, the most effective stretching routines are those that involve actively taking our joints through their full natural range.


I didn't have easy access to a microphone to record a voiceover, so I'll describe each movement here:

First, hook the thumbs of both hands at opposite ends of a light resistance band, and with your elbows straight, begin with your hands out in front of you, about twice the width of your shoulders. Move your arms one at a time in comfortable circles, taking one arm up and behind you, which will cause the band to be behind you, and then bring your other arm back in front of you, which will bring the band back in front of you. Do several repetitions, and then the same thing leading with the other arm.

Next, secure one end of the band under one foot, and with that same side hand, do unilateral shoulder presses up toward the ceiling, aiming to keep your core strong and even - you don't want your body to tilt to one side. Repeat on the other side.

Next, holding the band behind you with both hands as you would a towel to dry your back with one arm elevated and eternally rotated, and the other arm down and internally rotated to anchor the band at your lower or middle back region, extend your upper arm toward the ceiling for several repetitions as you would with exercises that target your triceps muscle. Repeat on the other side.

Next, start as your originally did, band in front of you around two shoulder widths apart, and take both arms up and behind you at the same time, then bring them back in front of you at the same time. Repeat for several repetitions.

Next, hold the band with both hands so that it's relatively taut while your elbows are bent to 90 degrees and the inner sides of your elbows are against the sides of your trunk. From this starting position, keeping your elbows close to your sides, repeatedly move both hands away from the midline at the same time - you don't need much amplitude here to condition rotator cuffs that externally rotate your shoulder joint while stabilizing your scapulae.

Finish by holding the band behind you at around shoulder height, arms spread about two shoulder widths apart, and in this position, move your hands in small circles several times from front to back.

To reiterate the original point I wanted to convey, it's more beneficial to actively take our joints through their full range every day than it is to do conventional stretches where we hold static positions. Static stretching can be beneficial, especially if done after being active or when the focus is on improving balance such as while doing yoga poses. But we can more effectively condition all of our major muscles and ligaments to be at ideal lengths through active mobility work as shown in the video above.

For those who are new to our readership, here are simple mobility routines for all major joints:

Routine for healthier hips:

Routine for a healthier spine:

Routine for healthier knees, ankles, and hips:

Routine for healthier wrists, hands, and fingers:


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