The Clam Shell Stretch

August Muscle of the Month: The Thoracic Spine

Clam Shell Stretch (Also referred to as a book opener)


1: Lie on your side, with legs stacked and knees bent at a 45-degree angle.

2: Gently rest your head on your lower arm. Use your top arm to steady your frame.

3: Be sure your hipbones are stacked, and remain in this position throughout the exercise.

4: Brace your core to stabilize your spine and pelvis.

5: Keeping your feet and knees together, raise your top arm up and open until you can reach it to the ground on the opposite side of you. Try to get the back of your shoulder as close to the ground as possible without lifting your knees.

6: Slowly open and close your arms together (like a clamshell) 10 times on each side

7: Make sure you exhale as you open! The Clam Shell StretchThe Clam Shell StretchThe Clam Shell Stretch


Each month at Chesapeake Family Wellness, we choose a “Muscle of the Month” to focus on, and to help inform our patients on relieving pains they may be experiencing. Each month will start off with how to foam roll a specific muscle, followed by demonstrations on how to stretch the same muscle. It is often muscular imbalances that are creating pain. Tight hamstrings often cause low back pain. Over compensating with your left side could be causing pain on your right side. The human body is an incredible thing, so keeping it flexible and strong is incredibly important. To learn more about our “Muscle of the Month” series, please check us out on YouTube at Chesapeake Family Wellness or on Instagram @Chesapeakefamilywellness. Both on YouTube and Instagram, we go over all the motions of each stretch and release for each muscle. We also post patient testimonials, our blog entries, words from the Doc, and share other chiropractic care information. If there is ever a topic you wish us to expand on, feel free to message us on our Chesapeake Family Wellness Center Facebook page so we can connect!

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