Back Exercises to Help Relieve Back Pain By Anne Clarke
Sometimes, when someone hurts his or her back, he or she has a regular problem with back pain in general, or even if he or she completely throw their back out, as they say, rest can be very important. Nonetheless, movement is only going to be more difficult if the muscles are too stiffened by lack of strength due to extended periods of not being used. When you can, and to the measure at which you can, you will want to begin exercising regularly to prevent worsening back pain.
When you do certain exercises regularly they will maintain your comfort and quality of life, you can do specific stretches which will strengthen both your abdominal muscles as well as your back muscles. When you perform these exercises you will be surprised at how rapidly your back pain will be minimized. The key is to keep it up. Especially for a chronic condition, but even if only an occasional but repeated occurrence, the regularity of your exercises is essential.
Even when you back is feeling good, strengthening the muscles that support the spine and posture will keep your back in great condition all the time. One example, which I believe is perhaps the most important back stretch that anyone can do, is what is commonly referred to as the “child’s pose.” For this stretch, which can be used as a part of a warm-up exercise and / or as a cool-down exercise, you will kneel and bring your chest down towards the floor. If your head does not reach the floor comfortably, use one of your forearms to rest your forehead on. This is a relaxing position. Gravity will do almost all of the work for you. If your head does touch the floor, just bring your arms back to rest on your feet. This is a comfortable way to relax and will also help you relax your shoulders for a better curving of the back.
Another example of a simple but effective exercise that targets back pain is to lay flat on your back. Bend the knees so that your feet are about as wide as your hips, leaving a space between the knees, and your feet remain flat onto the floor. In this sequence you will begin with breathing exercises. Take deep breaths pushing your back into the floor and thinking of pulling your bellybutton towards your spine as you breathe in and relax as you exhale. Then breathe in and as you breathe out let your knees fall slowly to the right side. You will move or “walk” the feet then slowly across the floor – pulling and lengthening through your spine your arms will move out to the side, pulling directly from your shoulders. The most important thing to remember in this exercise is to keep both shoulders planted as you drop the knees and move your feet as far as you can toward the right hand. If you can grab your feet, do so. But be sure not to push yourself. Your head will be turned to the left side, and you will look to the left hand throughout the stretch. The objective is to be lengthening through the spine, allowing it to twist to a comfortable stretch – always remembering to lengthen through the torso. In addition, you will also be able to stretch the shoulders, arms, the legs and the upper back all in one simple sequence.
My third example may not be possible for many people in more serious pain than others to do right away. Nonetheless, once you can, the movement often called the plow is a wonderful, refreshing exercise. Lying on the floor you lift your legs over your head
One of my absolute favorite exercises to do (always at the end of my workout) is to roll up my mat or a towel, lay it on the floor and, as I lay down I line it up with my spinal cord. Gravity, like with the child’s pose, is your key factor in this stretch and it feels so good. Lie on top of the mat or towel for as long as you like. It is so relaxing – just don’t fall back to sleep if you have to get to work! Many more people are doing regular exercises to improve the condition of their backs, especially when he or she experiences regular back pain. Doctors are now (more and more often) suggesting gentle back exercise for even the worst of back pain patients. So give it a try – you may be able to significantly improve the quality of your life!
Anne Clarke writes numerous articles for websites on gardening, parenting, fashion, and home decor. Her background includes teaching, gardening, and fashion.