Best Stretches For Low Back Pain Relief You Can Do At Home
by | Aug 11, 2020 | Back Pain |
Low back pain is common in adults. In fact, its estimated that 80% of the population will suffer from some type of back pain in their lives. While that figure is staggering, athletes can pose an even higher risk for back injuries resulting in downtime from exercise and training. It is critical to research the best stretches for low back pain relief.
As frustrating as back pain is, not being able to workout may be even more devastating. The best stretches for low back pain relief can help ease muscle tension in the spine and improve range of motion. Here are 5 stretches that will get you back to your active lifestyle.
Cobra Pose Or Sphinx Pose
The Cobra yoga pose can be a little challenging for the arm, so the Sphinx pose might be more suitable. Active back bending is the goal here. Those with pain in the mid-back might not be able to go as far in the beginning. Don’t push beyond what’s comfortable.
To perform it:
Lay on your stomach on the floor. Extend out the legs so that the top of the feet rest on the floor. The knees should be relaxed don’t use them to push or extend.
Place the hands underneath the shoulders so that the fingertips are forward. Bend down the elbows and ensure that the arms are tucked into the body.
Engage the leg and buttock muscles so that the feet and legs are pushed into the floor. This is essential because it helps support the low back while extending the spine and lifting the chest.
Breathe out. While doing so, push up gently while using the arms to lift up the head and chest. Alternatively, rise to the elbows and stay in that pose .
Bend the back a little more by lifting the chest further and straightening the arms while pressing down with the hands. Some people can’t do this only do what’s comfortable that doesn’t cause pain.
Hold the position for about 30 seconds . Gently return back to the floor and repeat this stretch up to four times.
Stretching Exercising And Yoga
Its necessary to stretch your lower back with protection and care. Be very gentle and vigilant when you have some accident or health concern.
First, its best to talk to your healthcare provider. You can also add some exercises to your everyday routine to strengthen your lower back and enhance flexibility.
If youre struggling with back pain, yoga might be just what your doctor has ordered.
Yoga is a mind-body treatment that is often recommended to relieve back pain and the tension that comes with it. Suitable poses will relax and strengthen your body.
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Hyperextension On The Fitness Ball
If you dont have a gym membership and youd prefer doing this stretch at home, grab a large fitness ball and lay on your stomach. Start by placing both hands behind your head and lowering your shoulders. Stop once you feel a full stretch and then engage your lower back, bringing yourself back up again. You can use this stretch as a back exercise as well by doing more repetitions.
Stretch Your Hip Flexors
Tight hip flexors cause your pelvis to tilt forward, tightening the muscles of your lower back. Stretch the hip flexors once or twice a day with a kneeling hip flexor stretch for relief.
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The Truth About Back Pain
When it comes to lower back discomfort, it’s often not the lower back at all that’s causing the problem. Lots of different muscle groups are connected to the lower back, and when one of those muscles is tight it can pull on the lower back and cause pain.
For example, tight hamstrings are a common cause of low back pain. Sitting all day can cause the hip flexor muscles on the front of your pelvis to become shortened, which can also lead to lower back pain. This is why simply doing lower back stretches, although they may provide temporary relief, isn’t the best way to treat your lower back pain and tightness.
Move : Lower Trunk Rotation
“The goal is to keep your opposite shoulder blade pinned to the floor as your knees rock in the opposite direction,” Becourtney says. “As soon as your shoulder blade lifts off the floor, you lose the dissociation between the lower body and torso that is necessary to maximize this movement.”
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Move : Prone Hamstring Stretch
Point the toes of your elevated foot toward your body to add a calf stretch element to this back stretch, Becourtney says.
Half Lord Of The Fishes
Also known as Seated Twist posture, Ardha Matsyendrasana helps improve posture and spinal mobility in those with lower back pain. Don’t allow your lower back to collapse as your perform this posture, and remember that a little goes a long way when twisting with lower back pain.
How to do half lord of the fishes posture: Sit with your legs extended out in front of you . Lift your right leg and place your foot on the ground beside your left knee. Bend your left leg and place the left foot on the outside of your right hip. Ground down through your hip bones, and inhale as you find length through the spine. Hook your left elbow on your right knee as you place your right hand behind you, and gently twist. Stay for 5 to 8 breaths.
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How To Improve Flexibility And Strength
There are lots of simple stretches and exercises you can do to improve flexibility and strength in your lower back.
Focus on lengthening and extending the spine. This helps to relieve compression in the lower back. Stretching the hamstrings is also beneficial.
In addition, you should choose exercises that focus on working the hips, core, and gluteal muscles.
Doing daily activities such as walking, swimming, or yoga is recommended. Put forth dedicated effort into being active as often as possible. Consistently doing exercises and activities to loosen up your lower back will usually yield positive results within a few weeks.
Here are nine exercises you can add to your daily routine to help strengthen your lower back and improve flexibility.
This exercise increases flexibility, relieves tension, and helps to loosen the lower back and hip muscles. You can also engage your core muscles if comfortable.
- erector spinae
- pelvic muscles
Best Lower Back Stretches
Here, Stockley will demonstrate the lower back stretches that could help ease lower back pain and tight muscles, but before you get into them, take note of her tips:
- Allow the breath to activate the stretch and give your body time to settle into each stretch
- Dont strive for flexibility, just aim to open up the body and find space in the area of pain
- Pay attention to the area of tension in the stretch is it resisting? Does it soften? Does it feel better? Or has the lower back stretch made it feel more painful?
- Avoid ballistic stretching as these sudden movements can put more stress on the muscles
- Hold each stretch for as long as feels comfortable aim for 30 seconds each if youre starting out, then build up to 2 minutes. If it’s a dynamic stretch , aim for 10 reps
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Exercises To Relieve Pain In The Lower Back
According to the Global Burden of Disease 2010, pain in the lower back area is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Its also the most common reason why most Americans miss workdays. The reason for lower back pain ranges from simple reasons like poor posture to more complicated ones like internal organ damage and spine conditions.
If youre experiencing back pain, theres a huge chance that the muscles in the area are tense. Stretches designed for relieving lower back pain help reduce the tension in the area and improve blood circulation. Here are nine kinds of exercises that help relieve pain in the lower back area:
Less Sitting And More Breaks
Sometimes prevention is the key and this can certainly apply to lower back pain. Many peoples lower back pain can be traced all the way to the amount of sitting they do each day. According to U.S. News, 86 percent of Americans sit for 13 hours a day. Thats a lot of sitting, and if by chance you are going to sit for that long, I urge you to take as many breaks as possible from it.
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Exercises To Help Lower Back Pain
The exercises below are meant to strengthen and improve flexibility in your muscles to support your lower back. Lower back pain may be recurring or a one-time experience. Doing these back strengthening exercises daily will ease lower back pain and prevent future episodes by strengthening your abdominal, hip, and back muscles.
Knee to Chest Stretch
This stretch is an easy way to warm up for your workout.
âStep 1: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
âStep 2: Use both hands to pull one knee into your chest.
âStep 3: Tighten your abdominals and press your spine to the floor. Hold for 5 seconds.
âStep 4: Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.
You can repeat this stretch 2 to 3 times in the morning and at night.
Lower Back Rotational Stretch
This is another easy stretch to get your muscles ready to move.
âStep 1: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
âStep 2: Keep your shoulders firmly on the floor, roll your bent knees to one side and hold for 5 to 10 seconds.
âStep 3: Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.
You can repeat this 2 to 3 times in the morning and night.
Glute Bridges Exercise
This exercise aims to strengthen your glute and abdominal muscles.
âStep 1: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
âStep 3: Hold the position as long as you can, starting with 3 deep breaths. Then return to the starting position.
Increase Your Magnesium Intake
Magnesium induces muscle relaxation. You will find a lot of magnesium-rich fruits and vegetables.
Bananas are a great magnesium source, such as peanuts, spinach, almonds, and brown rice. Alternatively, you should take magnesium supplements to increase your magnesium intake, helping relax tight muscles.
Before taking any supplement, make sure to speak to your doctor.
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When To Visit A Doctor For Your Lower Back Pain
Back pains now and then are quite common. But if the pain is accompanied by other symptoms, its time to consult a doctor or a pain management specialist. They determine the exact cause of the back pain and recommend a treatment plan. Here are other signs that tell you its time to visit a doctor for the back pain:
- The patient has a fever. Back pain and fever are both symptoms of flu, but theyre also signs of serious infection.
- The patient has encountered a trauma, such as a high fall or car accident.
- The patient is over 50 years old.
- Theres tingling or numbness in the back.
- The patient experienced a loss of bladder and bowel function.
- The pain persists for over six weeks.
How To Relieve Lower Back Tightness
This article was co-authored by Jason Myerson, DPT, DMT, OCS, FAAOMPT. Jason Myerson is a Physical Therapist and a Certified Orthopedic Specialist. He is affiliated with Performance Physical Therapy & Wellness with clinics located in Connecticut. He serves as adjunct faculty in the Physical Therapy Department at Quinnipiac University. Jason specializes in helping active people get back to hobbies, activities, and sports they love while utilizing an integrated approach to wellness. He holds an MA in Physical Therapy from Quinnipiac University and a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Arcadia University. He is Residency and Fellowship trained in Orthopedic Manual Therapy, achieved a Doctorate in Manual Therapy and became a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapists .There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 189,632 times.
Lower back tightness is a common complaint among many people. Improving your overall physical and mental health can help relieve lower back tightness immensely. With the proper care, relief for your tight lower back is within reach.
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Is It Okay To Do Yoga With Lower Back Pain
If you have any history of lower back injuries, problems with your discs, or experience pain that lasts more than 72 hours without improving, Dr. Cyrelson suggests seeing a physical therapist before doing any exercises. If you have an issue that requires medical attention, it’s best to address it before it becomes worse.
If your lower back pain is more of a general achiness or discomfort, though, it’s worth trying some yoga stretches to address any tightness and alignment issues. Stretches like childs pose and downward dog are particularly good because they provide a sense of relief, not just in the lower back but also throughout all your back musclesalleviating any tight spots.
Stretches For Low Back Pain
- Back Flexion Stretch. Lying on the back, pull both knees to the chest while simultaneously flexing the head forward until a comfortable stretch is felt across the mid and low back.
- Knee to Chest Stretch. Lie on the back with the knees bent and both heels on the floor, then place both hands behind one knee and pull it toward the chest, stretching the gluteus and piriformis muscles in the buttock.
- Kneeling Lunge Stretch. Starting on both knees, move one leg forward so the foot is flat on the ground, keeping weight evenly distributed through both hips . Place both hands on the top of the thigh, and gently lean the body forward to feel a stretch in the front of the other leg. This stretch affects the hip flexor muscles, which attach to the pelvis and can impact posture if too tight.
- Piriformis Muscle Stretch. Lie on the back with knees bent and both heels on the floor. Cross one leg over the other, resting the ankle on the bent knee, then gently pull the bottom knee toward the chest until a stretch is felt in the buttock. Or, lying on the floor, cross one leg over the other and pull it forward over the body at the knee, keeping the other leg flat.
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How To Loosen Up A Tight & Sore Lower Back
Back pain statistics are staggering. At any given time, 31 million Americans deal with lower back pain, and it’s among the most common reasons people miss work, notes the American Chiropractic Association.
Video of the Day
Sitting at a desk all day, poor posture and a sedentary lifestyle are common causes of lower back pain and tightness. And, although regular exercise is one of the best ways to prevent lower back pain, intense activity and weightlifting can sometimes cause stiff and sore back muscles.
Easing your back lower back discomfort depends on its cause. Stretching, stabilization and self-massage are among the techniques that can help.
Need More Help From Goodpath
Regular stretching combined with the right exercise techniques and lifestyle choices can be very helpful to your back pain.
Be sure to take Goodpaths quiz to create a custom back pain program. After you answer a few short questions, we can build you an integrative treatment plan that is specifically designed for you.
We analyze your medical history, lifestyle choices, age, and other factors before building a personalized kit delivered right to your doorstep.
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