|(sorry, guys, we’re not talking the BBQ kind; although that does sound yummy…)
There are a few movements we do in the gym, like lunging, where we’re changing levels (aka going up and down) while keeping our torso in a straight position. A common mistake that often occurs is an improper rib cage position – that is, we either flare our ribs out, opening up the front of the body too excessively, or we cave forward, collapsing the torso toward the hips.
The negative consequence of flaring out or collapsing forward is that it doesn’t provide sufficient alignment for the proper muscles to fire, creating instability in the core and hips. A core that doesn’t support the rest of the body can result in plateaued strength gains and, in a worse case scenario, injury.
Instead, we want you to, as fitness guru and coach Tony Gentilecore says, “own your rib cage position” – that is, lock your rib cage down and make it act as a support brace.
Here’s an example of Owning Your Rib Position: if I drew a straight line from my sternum to my belly button, this line wouldn’t get any longer or any shorter during the movement. I’ve locked it in and have contracted or braced my abs.