Back Pain Exercises You Can Do At Home
Back pain can happen to anyone, from the fittest athletes to the most sedentary couch potatoes. No matter who you are, when your back is hurting, moving and exercising is likely the last thing you want to do. Here’s the catch: even though it seems like it would be the exact opposite, sitting still is actually the last thing you should do in some cases. Exercising and stretching to relieve back pain can help strengthen muscles that support and work in tandem with your back.
Below are several exercises you can do in the comfort of your home. If done correctly – and in conjunction with expert chiropractic care – the following exercises will help relieve tension, soreness, and stiffness.
Starting Slow Is Starting Safe
Before performing any exercise to alleviate back pain, consult with your chiropractor or family care physician. Depending on the type of pain you’re experiencing, some exercises should be avoided. For instance, professional Yoga coach Julie Rader says, " If you have a slipped disc in the lower back or sciatica, please avoid all deep forward bends as these can make your condition worse.”
The National Health Service also states that, “When starting out, [patients should] go gently to get used to the movements and work out how far [they] can go into each position without feeling pain.”
Four Easy Exercises to Relieve Back Pain
Remember to stay hydrated, breathe deeply, and to stop if you feel pain when performing the following:
Child’s Pose Stretch
In the fully stretched position, rest your arms in a relaxed position along the floor, rest your stomach comfortably on top of your thighs, and rest your forehead on the mat. You should feel a mild stretch in your shoulders and buttocks and down the length of your spine and arms. Ease into this stretch by keeping your shoulders and neck relaxed. Don’t force your derriere to move any closer to your heels than is comfortable.
Two-Knee Twist (or Knee Rolls)
Lying flat on your back, stretch your arms out to a 90-degree angle with your torso. Bending your knees, bring your legs up to your chest. Slowly lower your knees to the floor (or as far as you can) on one side. Count to 20, and then return your knees to your chest. Finish back at your starting position, and then perform again, lowering your knees to the other side.
Sphinx (or Back Extensions)
Lie on your stomach. Prop yourself up on your hands, elbows touching the floor. Now, keeping your neck straight (i.e. not bending your head backwards), gently push down on the floor. Your back should arch, and elbows remain on the floor. Hold this position for 20 seconds. Return to starting position.
Start on your hands and knees. Arch your back upwards, like an angry cat, hold for a couple of seconds and then arch the back downwards, like a happy cat. Repeat this exercise 10 to 20 times.