This back stretch over a pillow helps to reverse the kyphosis in the thoracic spine. While
it is normal to have a kyphosis, gravity is always working to exaggerate
it. Excessive kyphosis puts pressure on discs and vertebral bodies, and
in severe cases can interfere with breathing.
Postures we assume during the day normally accentuate our thoracic kyphosis. Sitting at a computer, working at a counter, reaching forward - all these postures bring our head and upper trunk forward. When in that position for lengthy periods connective tissues can shorten and hold us there. This is a good stretch to lengthen the muscles, ligaments, and other connective tissues on the front of our spine.
Tightness in the thoracic region can cause headaches, chest pain, lower back pain, mid or upper back pain. In some cases it can cause jaw pain and result in muscle imbalances that can cause shoulder pain and impingement.
You should not have discomfort doing this back stretch over a pillow. If you do, stop and consult your physical therapist before proceeding with any further stretches.
For Other Stretches
Exercises for Posture