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How to check a neutral spine

During the podcast RowingChat with Marlene Royle she mentioned an easy way to demonstrate the “neutral spine” position … read more

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During the podcast RowingChat with Marlene Royle she mentioned an easy way to demonstrate the “neutral spine” position for your athletes. [It’s at 19 minutes if you want to listen].

The safest position for a spine is neutral

How to find the neutral spine position – simply put your hands clasped behind your neck your spine will come into a neutral position.  And then you can see if you are flexed or curved in the boat – of if you have a neutral spine.

rowing, neutral spine rowing, seated neutral spine,
Marlene Royle demonstrates the neutral spine test seated

Test this while sitting – get the feeling for what is a neutral spine – compare this to a photo of you in the boat or a video so you can see what you DO with what you think you do. 

Rowing coaches always teach a neutral spine because it is more resilient to injury and it favours leverage in the rowing stroke – this is more important than pulling when the forces are going through your spine.

hands behind head, neutral spine
Photo credit: Spark People
About Rebecca Caroe
Rebecca is the host of RowingChat podcast and is a masters athlete and coach. Passionate about helping others enjoy the sport as much as she does. View all posts from Rebecca Caroe

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