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Episode Info:

In this episode, I discuss and dissect the recent trending story about Esther Gokhale and her work with back pain- specifically comparing modern, first world, anatomy of the spine (she terms the “S- Shaped Spine) and the “J- Shaped Spine found in very old anatomy books in addition to modern indigenous peoples who live a traditional, non sitting lifestyle.

In this discussion I explain the reasons for the anatomical differences, their implication in poor posture, hip, SI, back, neck, and shoulder pain, and I offer a strategy for improving posture and banishing back pain.


Esther Gokhale’s website:

Exercise tips and movement cues:


1)   lift the collarbones (disengage your shoulder girdle- engage your core)

2)   build your glute medius (stand, balance, lunge- use your legs more often!)

3)   build your glute complex (min, med, max)- squat often

4)   Leg strength and mobility is important

5)   Keep a long neck (starts in the mid back- lumbo dorsal hinge)

6)   Get a Functional Assessment and tape the non or low functioning muscles




Overhead squat with broomstick:

Brick smash:

Banded walking (sideways):

Kettlebell squat: (deadlift, Romanian deadlift, hex bar deadlift)- prep hip thrusts, banded hip thrusts

Walking lunges (fwd/reverse):


1)   Book on head (to lift collarbones)- Do this first:

2)   Overhead squat with broomstick:

3)   Walking lunges:

4)   Reverse lunges with thrust:

5)   Glute Bridge/Pelvic thrusts

6)  Lunge matrix:

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