Bridging Your Way to Better Health
The Back bridge is an exercise that has withstood time, it’s almost certain that any Yoga book you open you will see some sort of bridging variation. The great thing about the Bridge is how many bio-mechanical issues are addressed with a single movement. Not only does it activate your gluteal muscles (Buttocks), but it also helps to improve core stabilization and prevent lower back pain. The best part is that you don’t need any fancy gym equipment, just your plain old bodyweight.
Progressing your way into a Full Back-Bridge
Glute Bridge– If you never tried doing a bridge before this might be a great place to start. Lie flat on your back with your knees bent and feet touching the floor. You are then going to push your pelvis upwards contracting your Gluteal muscle ( buttocks) then come back down to the floor. Always try to make sure that your pelvis isn’t sagging, try to keep them as high as possible.
Reverse Bridge- Once you’ve mastered doing a regular glute bridge the next progression is a reverse bridge. Start by sitting with your hands to the side and legs extended. Just like in the glute bridge Drive your pelvis upwards as high as you can. You should feel your Gluts and Hamstring Muscle being contracted.
Neck Bridge- The neck bridge is a great progression once you’ve mastered doing a glute bridge and reverse bridge. Start by getting into a full bridge position with the crown of your head touching the floor and your two hands on the side for support( you can also do this without placing your hands on the ground hands for support). The goal is to start lengthening your abdominal muscles and gaining spinal flexibility in order to work your way up to doing a full back bridge.
Full Back Bridge- Once You’ve mastered doing the above progressions you should be ready physically to begin training towards doing a full back bridge. From my personal experience it’s a great idea to start stretching your Quadriceps and getting your body warmed up before doing the Back Bridge. You’re basically going to get into a neck bridge position with your hand on the floor and press up. Don’t be in a hurry to do the full back bridge, take your time and listen to your body.