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Gentle Rolling and Deck Squats to Improve Spinal Mobility, Core Strength, and Balance

If your circumstances are such that tumbling on foam flooring isn't possible, I would suggest making use of a mattress or even a stack of gym mats that gives you about 6 to 8 inches of stable cushioning.

With this cushioning in place, begin by sitting at the edge with your feet on the ground, roll back in a partial backward roll, then roll forward to your starting position. Repeat this back and forth rolling motion several times, keeping your core engaged and allowing your spine to gently flex.

Once comfortable with back and forth rolling, repeat the same motion but use the momentum of rolling forward to finish with a body-weight squat, keeping your heels in firm contact with the ground and using your thigh muscles to push your body straight up - in the gymnastics world, this is called a deck squat; it's an excellent full-body mobility exercise that promotes good balance and joint position sense.

When you're comfortable doing deck squats, you can further challenge yourself and improve agility by beginning with a front roll and ending with a deck squat.

For an overview of exercise progressions that you can work at to improve your mobility and balance in a systematic way, please feel free to visit our Mobility Exercise Progressions page here:

Mobility Exercise Progressions

For some suggestions on how to set up a simple workout area at home, please feel free to view:

Suggested Resources for a Home Gym


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