One of the best movement drills you can do for your spine is using the peanut to help your muscles release into extension to stop the rounding of your shoulders and letting gravity hunch you forward.
Unfortunately, modern day conveniences such as phones, computers, cars and chairs have forced us to 1. stop moving as much as we should 2. force our spines into forward flexion. 3. have to deal with aches and pains on a much more frequent basis.
If you find yourself thinking about your body pain more than you would like you need to make a change to the input to the nervous system. Bottom line – when you feel pain it’s because your brain doesn’t feel safe.
Where does your brain feel safe?
On the ground and when it is getting lots of oxygen.
Therefore, my number one recommended movement is the peanut.
How to make a peanut –
Take 2 balls and wrap them in duck tape or place them in a sock.
Place each ball on either side of your spine and lie down on it.
Work the peanut up your spine to the base of your neck.
The focus should be on your breathing. Inhale for 4 hold for 2 and exhale for at least 8. If you cannot exhale for at least 8 seconds you should remain on the spot until you can. If it’s too much tension you will need to use softer balls to not overload your nervous system.
The key with the peanut is to connect your breath, nervous system, fascia, muscles, ligaments and tendons. You will not “fix” your back or shoulder pain doing this movement. BUT, you will be able to change the pain cycle you are experiencing which will in turn help you influence change to your body.
Remember your brain wants to feel safe. Without the breath or the ground – your likelihood of feeling safe decreases.
By the way, you should feel uncomfortable doing this for the first 3-5 days after that you will start feeling a release and your “pain” will decrease greatly.