For people who have back pain, the last thing they want to do is stretch, but sometimes this is just what is needed to help alleviate the pain. It is important to stretch the back because the spine is designed for mobility, to twist from side to side and to bend from front to back. Stretching is an essential way to keep the muscles in the back balanced. It is also recommended to perform stretches before and after any type of physical exercise or heavy labor. This will help keep the muscles from getting too strained.
There are a number of stretches that can help relieve back pain. Before trying any of these back pain stretches it is important to know how to do them correctly and most efficiently. Starting at the neck and working down to each muscle will allow the person to use the already stretched muscles while doing the other back pain stretches. It is important to stretch slowly and gently. It should only be done to the point of mild tension and not to the point of pain. Do not bounce during the stretches. Simply hold the stretch for 10 seconds and then release. When starting out, three stretches is usually enough and as the flexibility increases so can the stretches.
To stretch the neck, begin with the feet flat on the floor. The head should be slowly tilted forward with the chin pointed towards the chest. Turn the head slowly to the left until the chin is aligned with the left shoulder. Hold this for a few seconds and then repeat for the right side. Return the head to the upright position and slowly tilt it to the left. The ear should be just over the left shoulder. Hold this and then repeat for the right side.
Another good stretch for back pain is the hip twist. This should be done lying flat on the back with the knees bent. Make sure to keep the back flat on the floor while slowly rotating the hips to the left. The legs are lowered to the floor and held there for a few seconds. Repeat this by rotating the hips to the right.
There are a number of exercise routines used for back pain stretches. Yoga is a wonderful way to increase the overall flexibility and strength of the spine. The stretches and poses in Yoga have been proven to be low stress and very useful in reducing or eliminating back pain. Also, many people have found that their mind and the rest of the body benefit greatly from the meditation of Yoga in addition the stretches helping with their back pain. For those people with back pain starting one of these routines on a regular basis could relieve a lot of pain.
Written By: Updated: June 24,2011