This is an exaggerated curve of the thoracic vertebrae, leading to round-shoulders (giving a ‘hunch-back’ appearance). Individuals who spend long, continual periods at a computer may become kyphotic, as might women who have high levels of upper body adipose (fat) in their breast tissue. It is also quite common in the elderly due to a loss of bone mass (osteoporosis) and is known as dowagers hump.


  • Increased thoracic curve (stiff and too flexed)
  • Pectorals (major and minor) short and tight
  • Rhomboids, lower and middle trapezius lengthened and weaker
  • Breathing can be affected


  • Mobilise spine to extension
  • Lengthen and stretch the pectorals
  • Strengthen and shorten the rhomboids and trapezius
  • Focus on breathing and opening up thoracic area