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SHOULDERS BACK: 2 easy exercises to fix this common Irish dance problem

Updated: Feb 16, 2023

Irish dance strength and conditioning, shoulders back, Irish dance posture


Have you heard your dance teacher yelling this at you? You try to correct it by squeezing your shoulders back but then your ribs start sticking out and as soon as you start dancing, your shoulders begin rolling forward again. Let’s get to the bottom of this with two simple exercises you can do daily to help correct this common Irish dance problem. WHY do my shoulders roll forward? Sitting at school or work all day puts our body in a position where we are leaning forward with our shoulders rounded. We are basically training our body, 8 hours a day, to be positioned this way. It causes tightness in the front of your chest and weakness in your mid and upper back.

posture for Irish dance, Irish dance strength and conditioning, exercises for Irish dance posture

Tightness in the front of your chest (pulling your shoulders forward) occurs primarily in the Pec major/minor muscles and the Subscapularis. Weakness in your upper and mid back (NOT pulling your shoulders back) occurs primarily in the Mid & lower trapezius and Rhomboid muscles. This imbalance is what causes your shoulders to roll forward. Two Exercises to correct this imbalance and get your shoulders back Over-the-backs

These will help mobilize your shoulders so you have the flexibility to pull them back into alignment. NOTE - when you perform them, check your alignment. Body should be straight up and down - no ribs popping out, arching in the back or head leaning forward. Flys & Is These will help strengthen your mid and upper back so you have the strength to place your shoulders in alignment. NOTE - when you perform them, check your alignment. Body should be in a straight line from your hips to your head - no rounded back or sagging head. INTERESTED IN IRISH DANCE-SPECIFIC TRAINING VIDEOS?

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Happy Training!

Ellen G Waller, Irish dance strength and conditioning

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