Practice 23 – Rib Cage In Frontal Plane

Rib Cage In Frontal Plane

In the frontal plane, you are looking for the top of your ribcage to tip up and down sideways as a sea-saw.  

Your clavicle bones (the bones that sit between your throat and your shoulders) should not move individually, as this moves the shoulder joint and hunches your shoulders.  

For someone new to this, it may be difficult to see or understand the difference.   For a lot of people when they are asked to tilt their ribcage left or right, their first physical response to doing it will be to move their shoulder joint towards their ear.  This is not moving the ribcage.

So in the see-saw image below you will see the shoulder rise, but there is still a healthy gap between the shoulder and the ear.  In the hunched shoulder image, the shoulder is actively moving upwards, rather than simply moving through space because the ribcage is tilting.

1. Put your hands on your chest and keeping your head still, tilt your ribcage to the left and then to the right

2. Do your eyes stay on the horizon or is your head travelling sideways with your ribcage?

3. If your head is moving, pick something on the horizon to fix your gaze on, and then keep your eyes there while you tilt your rib cage sideways

4. To help with the tilt, when you are sending the right side of your ribcage upwards, send the fingertips of your left hand downwards

5. Or, if you are tilting the right side of your ribcage upwards, you can gently raise your right arm upwards, and send your right-hand fingertips pointing upwards, but over your left ear. (Do not overstretch your shoulder, or cause any discomfort, but do fully extend your fingers as if you are wanting to touch the ceiling)

6. Now repeat this on the other side

7. Is it easier to tilt left or right?

8. Can you notice if one side of your ribcage is generally higher than the other?

9. Does the base of your ribcage feel tighter on one side?