Fitness

Stretches For Back Pain

I work from home which means I spend a lot of time on my laptop so I could be working in my bed, at my desk or on the couch so my posture takes a beating sometimes. I need to stretch to ease tension and not affect my performance in other areas of life, if you know what I’m shhayinn… 🙂

There are different reasons why we experience back pain so if your back pain is excruciating I would suggest seeing a good chiropractor first. For some people, the cause of their back pain might be unrelated to their actual back; for example, tight hip flexors and hamstrings can cause these muscles to shorten when you sit still for lengths of time, tight muscles can throw off your form when exercising or even walking and as a result this can contribute to the overuse of your lower back muscles which could explain lower back pains…

These are your hip flexors, btw.

So, stretching overall is good, kids…

Here’s some exercises to ease back tension with directions below.

Lying Knee Twist: Lying on your back, knees bent at 90 degrees keep both knees together, spread your arms aside in a crucifix position, slowly move them either side of you using your hands to keep you stable, make sure you keep your upper back as flat to the ground as possible, this movement will stretch the para-spinal muscles and strengthen your ab muscles too.

Piriformis Seated Stretch: This stretch is associated most with relieving glute tension but it helps your back too, you normally see people doing this on the floor but I prefer it seated because I hunch a lot less and I feel like I get a better range of movement. Sit at the edge of a stable chair, cross the legs as pictured in the video and apply light pressure on your knee, pushing it down, lean forward making sure to keep your spine straight.

Seated twist: This is probably my favourite back stretch. Sit down with your legs straight in front of you, bend one leg and cross the foot over your other straight leg, turn your torso towards the hip of the bent leg and use your opposite arm to increase the stretch (check the vid). The seated twist increases flexibility down your entire spine.

Cat Pose: The Cat pose (Marjaryasana) stretches and strengthens your spine to help improve your posture and balance, you can actually do this in your bed in the morning, it’s such a common yoga move but I didn’t realise until recently why they do this all the time lol, it’s great. On all fours with your hands under your shoulders and knees under your hips bring your belly button in and raise your back (arch it), inhale deeply through the nose, filling your lungs as you come up. Pause, exhale and release.

Knee to Chest: Lying on your back with your knees bent, bring one leg (still bent) up to your chest as far as you can, comfortably. Hold this for 30 seconds and do it three times on each side, you can bring your head up occasionally to add to the stretch unless you feel any strain.

Have a try of these and let me know how you find them.

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