Normally we talk about bracing the lumbar spine, but what about the other regions like the neck and thoraxic region. Why do we not talk about bracing them? If this is something that is important, how do we do it?

1 Answer 1


Force transmission requirements for the torso in lifts like the squat and deadlift are maximal at the hips and decrease up the torso, reaching zero at the point where the load is applied to the torso. I.e. There is no need to resist spinal flexion at or above the point where the barbell rests in a back squat, or above the shoulders in a deadlift.

People don't talk about thoracic bracing because it's subject to much lower stresses during the lift compared to the lower back, and would be braced by the same act by which the lumbar is braced anyway.

People don't talk about cervical (neck) bracing while lifting because the neck isn't loaded at all in these lifts.

  • Then does neck position not matter in these lift? I heard some people say to keep forward, other to look 10 cm in front of u
    – Babu
    Jan 2 at 3:50
  • It matters to the extent that changes in neck position can make it difficult to perceive what position your torso is in. If you're bending your neck to look up, it can make you feel like your torso is straight in the bottom of a squat even when it is actually flexing. Hence the recommendations are usually to look in the direction where your chest should be pointing, which will be the floor in front of you in a low bar squat, or a higher position in a high bar squat. Jan 2 at 6:12
  • Could you explain with a picture? I am having a hard time visualizing this
    – Babu
    Jan 2 at 6:19
  • The person on the left might think he is pushing his chest up, but it's actually just his head that is looking up: imgur.com/pIdvAoG Jan 2 at 7:04

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