Stretch Your Way Out Of Lower Back Pain!

One of the consequences of being sedentary, and also being incredibly active, is back pain. About 31 million Americans experience lower back pain at any given moment. It’s a common affliction and one that takes care and diligence to eliminate.

Desk sitting

Luckily, a little stretching can ward off this pain, increase the fluidity of mobility, and decrease chances of serious injury in the lower region of your body. It can also take pressure off the lower back, decreasing chances of pain in that area.

Whether you experience stiffness, aches, or spasms, the following stretches will help keep your back fit and strong.
knee-to-chest

1. Knee to Chest

Use this stretch to align pelvis and stretch lower back and rear end muscles.

  • Lie flat on your back with toes pointed to the sky.
  • Slowly bend your right knee and pull your leg up to you chest.
  • Wrap your arms around your thigh, knee or shin, and gently pull the knee towards your chest.
  • Hold for 20 seconds and slowly extend the leg to starting position.
  • Repeat three times each leg.

2. Lying Knee Twist

Use this stretch to align pelvis and stretch lower back and rear end muscles.

  • Lie flat on your back with toes pointed to the sky.
  • Slowly bend your right knee and pull your leg up to you chest.
  • Wrap your arms around your thigh, knee or shin, and gently pull the knee towards your chest.
  • Hold for 20 seconds and slowly extend the leg to starting position.
  • Repeat three times each leg.

piriformis

3. Piriformis Seated Stretch

This stretch is designed to help lengthen the piriformis muscle over time. This muscle is often the source of sciatica, or radiating leg pain.

  • Sitting with a straight back, cross your left leg over your right leg placing your foot next to your thigh and tuck your right leg in towards your buttocks.
  • Place your right arm on your leg as pictured and slowly ease into a stretch.
  • Be sure to keep your back straight and chest lifted.
  • Hold for 20 seconds and alternative sides, three times.

4. Restful Pose

A common pose in yoga, the restful child’s pose can help you relax your body.

  • Position yourself on the floor on hands and knees with your knees just wider than hip distance apart.
  • Turn your toes in to touch and push your hips backwards bending your knees.
  • Once you reach a comfortable seated position, extend your arms forward fully and allow your head to fall forward into a relaxation position.
  • Hold this pose for 20 seconds and slowly return to starting position.
  • Repeat three times. For modification if you have shoulder pain, place your arms on either side of your body, extending towards your feet.

lizard-lunge

5. Lizard-Lower Lunge

Apparently, lizards have loose hips and this hip opener’s moniker is testament to that.

  • Step your left foot forward several feet in front of the right foot.
  • Bend the left knee until it lines up perfectly with the ankle.
  • Drop the right knee to the ground and keep the toes curled under on that foot to stretch the calf muscle.
  • Walk the left foot out to the side and place both elbows on top of blocks on the inside edge of the left foot.
  • Keep hips lined up parallel to each other.
  • You are opening the right psoas muscle and the left inner thigh. To get deeper into the right psoas, lift the right knee into a high lunge.
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