6 Stretches to Help with Back Pain Relief
Are you wondering if spine surgery is the only answer for your chronic back pain? It’s possible that surgical intervention will offer you the best hope for relief, but Milwaukee, Wisconsin residents may want to try stretches first to see if they help with back pain relief.
The spinal column includes supportive tissue like muscle and tendons designed to relieve the pressure on the nerves in the back. Stretching makes this connective tissue both stronger and more flexible and that may be all you need to eradicate back pain for good.
Consider the following six back stretches to alleviate back pain.
1. The Knee to Chest Stretch
This is a basic stretch that helps keep the spine and pelvis in alignment. Just lie on your back and bend one knee up towards the chest. Wrap your hands under the raised thigh or on the top of the calf and pull your leg a little closer to give the lower back and buttocks a good stretch. Hold that position for a count of 20 and then release. Repeat the movement with the other leg, doing three complete sets.
2. The Sphinx Pose
The Sphinx is a popular yoga move that is effective for relieving back pain. Lie on your stomach with your hands next to your shoulders. Push up on your hands until you are resting on your elbows and hold that position for 10 seconds. You should feel a comfortable stretch as your back bends to accommodate the pose. Repeat this stretch up to five times.
3. The Cat and Dog Pose
Move up to what yoga enthusiasts call the table top position – on all fours with your shoulders directly over your hands and your hips over your knees. Push your head towards the floor as you round out your back, making sure your arms remain straight, to perform the cat stretch. Hold that pose for 30 seconds and then pull your head up until the back arcs inward for the dog stretch. Repeat both the cat and dog stretch up to five times.
4. Body Flexion
Lie down on the floor or mat with your legs out straight. Bend one knee toward your chest and then cross it over your body to touch the floor on the other side. Keep the hand on the side of the bending knee pressed against the floor next to your body and turn your head towards it. Hold this stretch for 20 seconds before changing sides. Do a set of three stretches for each knee.
5. Body Flexion Stretch
This is sometimes called the child’s pose in yoga circles, but all you need do is sit with your buttocks resting on the heels of your feet. Bend over until your head touches the floor and then push your arms out in front as if reaching for something. Hold this folded position for 30 seconds and then walk your hands to one side to stretch those muscles. Move your hands back to center and then walk them to the other side and hold.
6. Seated Stretch
Sit up and cross your legs. While keeping your back straight, reach your hands around one knee and pull it forward, as if trying to touch the knee to the opposite side of your body. At the same time, turn your head and chest in towards the stretching knee. Hold this pose for 20 seconds before changing to the other side. Do up to three repetitions of this exercise.
Daily stretches can do wonders for chronic back pain; just get the doctor’s approval before you start. A spine surgeon may assess the problem and create a non-surgical care plan to relieve your pain instead of recommending spine surgery. Back stretches can also help rehabilitate your back if you do have surgery.
If your back pain still persists after trying these stretches, contact Dr. Prpa for a consultation to get you back on track!