No Bands Required: 5 Easy mobility drills you should be doing!


Mobility. Everyone seems to be talking about it, and for good reason.

With the demands of our careers, lack of physical activity over the years, and the the increased reliance on the smart phone or tablet; we find our movement tends to get stiff and restricted. Scheduling daily mobility work is a great way to earn back some of your lost range of motion and maintain a pain-free body as you pursue your health and fitness goals.

Mobility work is the process of regaining control of the range of motion that you need for ________(insert activity here). With the rise in popularity of mobility work, so has the rise in the using giant rubber bands to help with your mobility work. When used correctly, using bands are a great way to help you gain mobility. It however is not the only way to gain mobility, and should not be your only method of mobility.

Here are 5 Mobility Exercises you should be incorporating into your training!

1) Couch Stretch: We sit WAAAAY to much. Free up your hips and loosen up your quads with this exercise. It can be performed just about anywhere. No equipment required. Keep your core tight and try and hold this position for 1-2 minutes.


2) Open-Book Thoracic Spine Rotations: The Thoracic Spine for most of you is locked up and stiff. Mobility in this region of the spine is needed for a healthy overhead position, breathing, and rotating side to side. Its crucial for helping you prevent shoulder pain and back pain.

1) Align your body like you see in the video. On your side, top leg bent to 90/90 and resting on a foam roller.

2) Take your top hand and place it over your bottom hand, arms extended straight out.

3) Slowly open up your top arm like a book and try to touch your top shoulder to the ground. It's important to keep your top knee down on the roller

4) Rotate in and out of this position slowly for 10-15 reps per side.


3) Active Straight Leg - Hamstring Lowers: Tight Hamstrings? Cannot touch your toes? This ones for you! While keeping both legs straight, slowly lower your free leg down to the ground. Perform 10-15 slow reps per side.


4) Eccentric Shoulder Flexion Lowers: Struggle with overhead movements? Actively control yourself into greater ranges of shoulder flexion! Follow this one up with the prone-press (see here) for a great shoulder mobility sequence.


1) lie on your back in a dead bug position. Low back needs to be flattened against the bench. Hips and knees at 90 degrees. Arms straight up in the air holding either a 15 pound bar or a PVC with a small amount (~2.5-5 pounds) on it. 2) keep your low back pressed into the bench, externally rotate your shoulders by trying to "break the bar" by trying to turn your palms in. 3) while holding this position lower your bar slowly over your head(arms straight )as far as you can go while maintaining contact of your low back with the bench. Perform 15 to 20 reps on slow tempo.

5) Eccentric Shoulder Extension Lowers: If you struggle to scratch your back, to un-hook your bra, or have anterior shoulder pain with a bench press or dip. This ones for you.


1) lie on your back in a dead bug position. Low back needs to be flattened against the bench. Hips and knees at 90 degrees. Arms straight and lowered down to your sides (palms down) holding (press grip width) either a 15 pound bar or a PVC with a small amount (~2.5-5 pounds) on it. 2) keep your low back pressed into the bench, and keep your shoulders from collapsing forward throughout the entire movement. 3) while holding this position lower your bar slowly down towards the ground, as far as you can go while maintaining contact of your low back with the bench shoulder and back position. Dose in amounts of 10-15 reps, Perform the reps on slow tempo.

There you go, 5 mobility exercises which do not require the use of bands. Give them a try and if you have any questions let me know!

Do you have lingering pain? Do you fear hurting your ______ again? Does this fear prevent you from living life fully, and training without limitations? I have good news for you, you don't need to live in fear of _____ pain.

The solution? Bulletproof your body by fixing your foundational movement patterns and building strength within those movement patterns! Build resilience, lift heavy weight, and live your life without pain or worry.

Questions about the content within this post? Interested in how you could eliminate your pain and improve your performance?

Send me an email at Tancini@groundtooverheadphysicaltherapy.com .

I'll be happy to help!

Dr. Michael Tancini, DPT


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Ground to Overhead Physical Therapy - Chapel Hill

201 S Estes Dr

Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Phone: (919) 960-1351

Email: tancini@groundtooverheadphysicaltherapy.com

Ground to Overhead Physical Therapy - Cary

11301 Penny Rd

Cary, NC 27518

Phone: (919) 960-1351

Email: tancini@groundtooverheadphysicaltherapy.com