Do you suffer from back pain? If you do, you're not the only one. 80% of Americans suffer from back pain at some point or another. The main cause is typically related to musculoskeletal damage throughout the spine, but back pain can creep up on even the most careful!
Before we get started, what even is the musculoskeletal system? In this body system you'll find all of the parts of our body that hold us together and provide movement and stability. Think about your bones and muscles, your tendons and ligaments, and any connective tissue binding those pieces together. When you get back-related pain, chances are you've hurt one of those crucial pieces. When you understand the problem, you can begin working towards a solution.
So what is the solution? Stretching. Our spines are one of the most important parts of our body. We need to keep it healthy!
I know what you're thinking...
Really? Just some back stretches are going to help me?
Honestly, my answer is yes. Stretching increases flexibility, range of motion, blood flow, and posture. Proper stretching not only works out tender sore muscles, but it can also help to prevent injury by keeping your body and muscles active and strong! In a nutshell, stretching is awesome for your body! No matter what state your body is in, stretching will help! The best part? It feels GREAT!
OKAY, enough with the sales campaign. Let's talk about our 7 favorite stretches to relieve back pain!
1. Knees to Chest: This stretch is just as simple as it is effective! Lay down with your back against the floor and pull your knees to your chest like you're in a ball. You'll feel your lower back round out, stretching your flexor muscles in the process.
2. Child's Pose: Feel the beautiful burn in one of our favorite stretches, Child's Pose. Sit on your knees and bend forward with your arms stretched in front of you. Use your fingertips to crawl the ground in front of you to deepen the stretch.
3. Legs Forward & Out: This glorious backstretch is disguised as a leg stretch! The good news is that it works great for both! Sit on the floor, extend your legs out in front of you, and reach towards your toes. Do variations of this pose by tucking one leg in and reaching towards the extended leg.
4. Legs Wide & Out: This variation on the above packs a punch! You wouldn't believe how much more stretch you can get just by widening the stance on your legs! Keep your legs straight and knees to the floor. Reach to the middle then to your toes.
5. Side Twist: The Side Twist stretch is a great way to engage all of your back muscles in a gentle twist. If you don't have anyone to help you with this pose, it's still easy to accomplish on your own. Lay on your back, shoulders into the floor, then cross your knee over your body and begin to twist until you feel a great stretch.
6. Upward Dog: This amazing yoga pose opens the chest while stretching the spine and strengthening the arms and wrists. Moving into a backbend position like this is even thought to energize and rejuvenate the body!
7. Back Bend: Fear not! This post isn't as hard as it looks! Lie on your back and gently lift yourself by your hands and feet. This stretch completely opens your chest and abdomen while still giving an excellent stretch along your spine.
Now that you have the best 7 stretches for relieving back pain, you can get started on your wellness journey! Remember, there's nothing better than taking care of your mind, body, and soul. Stretching hits all three.