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14Mar

Important muscles to exercise as we age are the upper back muscles to prevent that hunched over look where the chest muscles are too tight and the upper back muscles are weak. Exercises that don’t use any equipment to work the upper back aren’t thick on the ground, however there are a couple. If you can’t safely get up and down from the floor (which this exercise requires) then please comment and I will post another exercise that you can do.
The (snazzily named) Y-T-I raises target the muscles of your upper back that stabilize your shoulder blades and strengthen your shoulder muscles.
Y Raise

  1. Lie facedown on the floor with your arms resting on the floor above your head, completely straight and at a 30-degree angle to your body, so your body forms a Y shape.
  2. Your palms should be facing each other so that the thumbs point up (as if you were doing an ok sign!)
  3. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can, concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.
  4. Lower your arms back to the starting position.

T Raise

  1. Still lying facedown move your arms so that they’re out to your sides—perpendicular to your body. Your thumbs should be still pointing upwards with palms now facing forwards.
  2. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can, concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.
  3. Lower your arms back to the starting position.

I Raise

  1. Still lying facedown move your arms so that your body forms a straight line from your feet to your fingertips.
    Like with the Y your palms should be facing each other with your thumbs pointing up.
  2. Raise your arms as high as you comfortably can, concentrate on your upper back doing this work and not your arms.
  3. Lower your arms back to the starting position.

Do 10 reps of each Y, T and I (immediately after one another) and then rest for 1 minute before doing another 10 reps of each exercise. 10 reps is a goal, please start with the number of reps which feels comfortable.

For no equipment required lower back and core exercises please see the following article I wrote which details both Bird Dog (great name!) and the plank.

Before starting any new exercise program please check with your doctor and clear any exercise changes with them

For more information on Personal Training please go to Whole Life Fitness, Personal Training for the over-50s. This will open a new browser window.

  

2 Responses to Adding weight to your workout part 3 – The back

  1. This is really interesting and for anyone with a back problem a must I would imagine.

    • Helen Helen

      Thanks for the comment and also the chance to clarify that if a person is experiencing back problems or pain they should go and see a GP or physiotherapist first to diagnose the problem before embarking on any exercise programme.

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