When you have back pain, any exercise can become an exercise in pain and frustration. No matter how much you try, you just can’t seem to stretch the pain away.
Luckily, there are plenty of chiropractor-approved stretches out there that even people with chronic back pain can do to help ease the muscle tensions and promote an overall healthier back. If you start out carefully and do them every day, you should start to feel the tension in your back easing and you may even find the pain subsiding. While you should continue your chiropractic services on a regular basis so they can monitor your progress, you can also try these stretches in the comfort of your own home and see how they work for you.
Just remember that if you feel any discomfort, you should stop immediately and consult your chiropractor.
The Cat-Camel gets it’s name from the shapes your back will take during the exercise. In one pose, you will look like a cat stretching out and in the other, you will arch your back in a way that resembles a camel. This is a great, basic exercise to do to get your back muscles moving, easing any tension you may have that is causing stress.
First, get down on your hands and knees. Use an exercise mat if you have one in order to make it easier on your knees, or just do the exercise on carpet. Relax your neck and allow your head to droop, stretching the muscles at the top of your back.
Next, arched your back upward toward the ceiling so that you feel a nice stretch in the middle and lower parts of your back. This is the camel position and you should hold it for 15 to 30 seconds, however much time is comfortable for you. Then, slowly move your stomach toward the floor, creating a concave stretch with your head straight forward. This is the cat position, hold again for up to 30 seconds.
Repeat the positions two to four times. You can do this exercise every day.
Hip Flexor Stretch
Stretching your hip flexors will help get rid of tension that can cause pain in your back muscles. Tension in your legs can radiate upwards and cause more trouble, so you want to stretch many parts of your body to ensure the best results.
First, kneel down on your right knee and then place your left foot flat in front of you, so you could rest on your left knee if you wanted to. Keeping your torso straight and your hands on your hips, push forward with your hips as far as you comfortably can for 15-30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat several times.
This exercise can be done every day, as long as it doesn’t hurt your knees. There can be some discomfort, so don’t do the hip flexor stretch if you find your knees aching afterwards.
The Knee to Chest
This is a classic exercise that really stretches the muscles in your lower and middle back and can be very effective at relieving pain.
Lay down on the floor with your back straight and your knees bent so the bottoms of your feet touch the floor. Bring one knee to your chest, holding that shin with your hands and keeping your other leg bent with your foot on the floor. Pull toward you until you can feel your muscles stretching and hold for 30 seconds. Repeat with the other leg four or five times.
During this exercise, make sure that the small of your back is touching the floor at all times for the best results. If you want a bigger challenge, have your other leg straight on the floor instead of having it bent.
The Pelvic Lift
This exercise can also help strengthen your core muscles, which can benefit your back as well. If you’re back pain is especially bad, you may not be able to do the pelvic lift, so try it out with caution.
Lay down on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor about hips-width apart. With both of your arms extended away from you and your palms on the floor, raise your hips and push toward the ceiling, using your buttocks to help. Hold for five seconds and then return to starting position. Repeat for eight reps.
There are stretches you can do to help ease your back pain, so try these out and see how they work for you.
John Miller has suffered with back problems for several years, ever since he was involved in a car accident. He strives to look after himself and keep the pain at bay using natural methods wherever possible. He hopes his articles will help others who suffer from back problems.