back stretches

Annoying back pain can quickly take the wind out of your sails. Tight back muscles not only cause pain, they also make it harder to move comfortably. Fortunately there are back stretches you can perform to alleviate the pain and increase mobility. Adding stretches to your daily routine is one way to help get your back in shape and maintain the flexibility you need.

Upper Back Stretches
The thoracic spine, your upper back, has a lot of large muscles connected to 12 vertebrae. These muscles and vertebrae allow you to twist, extend and flex when they are working properly. When strained and tight, the area can become incapacitated and sore. It can also lead to lower back injury. The balance between the upper and lower back needs to be maintained in order that one area does not overcompensate for the immobility of the other.

Back stretches do not need to be complicated to get the results you are looking for. Isometric exercises can help reduce pain and increase mobility while not requiring much energy. One simple exercise is to look straight ahead with your palm on your forehead. Push on your head and use your neck muscles to resist the push. Resist the pressure for the count of ten.  Repeat the action for the sides of your head, first on one side and then on another. Each time count to ten.  For the back of your head use your fingers to resist the pressure. 5-10 repetitions on each side will help ease upper back and shoulder muscle pain and increase mobility.

Another easy thoracic exercise is called the thoracic extension. Sit on the edge of a sturdy chair while clasping your hands behind your head. Using a gentle motion, arch backward extending your spine without bouncing. You should feel the stretch throughout your upper body. Slowly return to the starting position. Repeat ten times.

Lower Back Stretches
Stiff muscles in the lower back are a common problem for many people. If the upper back is not moving properly, the lower back muscles may be overcompensating, causing stiffness and pain. Here is a simple exercise to help lower back pain and immobility. Lie on your back and bring your right knee to your chest. Hold it there for five to ten seconds, keeping your left leg straight. Lower your leg slowly and bring the left knee to the chest and hold for five to ten seconds. Repeat the motion on each side five to ten times.

Another stretch to release the lower back muscles also begins with the same position, only this time hold your arms out to the side and place them on the floor. Bring both knees up and slowly rotate from side to side five to ten times. You’ll feel the muscles beginning to ease up.

Always Check with Your Doctor First!
Before doing any exercise program, it’s always best to check with your doctor, especially if you are experiencing back pain. The wrong exercise could worsen your condition. If your pain or stiffness is due to an injury, you need to have it checked by a physician to ensure that there is not more extensive damage.

Injuries caused by the negligence or fault of another person may entitle you to monetary compensation for your losses. To find out if you have a personal injury case, call Frohlich, Gordon & Beason, P.A. law office for a complimentary consultation. We are the attorneys who care. We serve clients in Port Charlotte, North Port, Englewood, and the surrounding areas.