Exercise of the Week: Bear Position to Thoracic Bridge

About the Author: Eric Cressey

Today’s guest post comes from Cressey Sports Performance – Florida coach and internship coordinator, Andrew Lysy.

Bear Position to Thoracic Bridge is one of the newer mobility exercises we’ve been using lately to enhance thoracic spine, shoulder and hip mobility.

Unlike many other thoracic mobility exercises, Bear Position to Thoracic Bridge actively stretches out your biceps and pecs in a closed-chain manner.

In addition to creating length in the biceps and pecs, the athlete will also be working on anterior expansion, manubrium expansion and shoulder extension, which can help you regain shoulder internal rotation.

A few important cues for properly executing Bear Position to Thoracic Bridge:

1. Actively push away from the ground with your legs and arm/hand. While pushing away from the ground, create a cork-screw feeling with your hand so that your shoulder doesn’t tip/dip forward!

2. While extending your hips, maintain a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. This will help resist excess extension from your lower back and put all of the pressure on your hips!

3. Your feet and thighs should be parallel to each other.

This exercise is commonly used as a warm-up, mobility exercise or filler. We’ve used it for 2-3 sets for 5-8 reps. We’ve also held the Thoracic Bridge position for breaths.

Note from EC: If you’re looking to learn more about how I evaluate, program, and coach at the shoulder joint, be sure to check out my popular resource, Sturdy Shoulder Solutions. It’s on sale for $40 off through this Sunday at midnight; just enter the coupon code APRIL22 at www.SturdyShoulders.com. 

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