Self Improvement

Mandy Kloppers

Instant Back Pain Relief: Stretches for Lower Back Pain

65 million Americans are estimated to have recently had an episode that has caused them to have back pain. At any given time, 8% of Americans have back pain that they report limits their life in some way.

Depending on what has caused your back pain, stretches for lower back pain may help ease some of the tension and discomfort.

In this article, we’ll give you a few stretches that may offer you relief from back pain. However, it is necessary that we emphasize that you should consult your doctor before beginning in any exercise program. While stretches may help some people’s back pain, it may harm others. As such, it is important to follow your doctor’s advice on whether or not to do such stretches.

Read on for a few stretches that may help relieve some of your lower back pain.

An Important Note on Stretches for Lower Back Pain

Firstly, we’ve previously stated that you must consult with a doctor before doing any kind of stretches if you’ve had an injury or back pain of an unknown cause. If your back is simply stiff from working too long at a computer, it is likely safe for you to partake in these exercises and you’ll likely benefit from the stretch.

But, if your back pain is more severe or has arisen from an injury, be very cautious.

No matter the source of your back pain, it is important that you listen to your body. Do not do any stretching or exercises that cause pain. With exercise and stretching, you may feel mild discomfort, but you should stop immediately if you feel any pain.

If you’re interested in stretches for your specific issue, you may wish to consider some of the benefits of seeing a chiropractor.

1. Bending Forward and Touching Your Toes

Not many of us are particularly flexible, and if you have a lot of lower back pain or discomfort, you may not be able to touch your toes at all. That’s okay. Don’t push yourself to touch your toes if you physically can’t. Instead, just try your hardest.

If your lower back is stiff, this is a great way to get a deep muscle stretch. The muscles just above your behind can sometimes be difficult to stretch, and this is one way to target them.

2. Child’s Pose

This yoga pose is a great way to get a deep stretch in all of your back muscles.

Get on all fours on the floor, preferably on a yoga mat. Keep your hands in the same place as you rock backwards and rest your weight on your calves and feet. Keep the stretch and breathe through it, trying to maintain as much of it as possible.

The child’s pose not only helps stretch lower back muscles, but it is also a great pose to sit in while you meditate or reflect on the day.


3. Butterfly Stretch

When we are walking, running, or just even standing our hips are taking a large amount of stress. A butterfly stretch is designed to take away stress from the center of our kinetic chain, and even improve our posture. There are three steps in doing a butterfly stretch. First, sit up straight and put your soles together. Secondly, inhale and contract your abdominal muscles while gently leaning forward.

And finally, when you feel your muscles being stretched hold that position for five seconds while holding your breath.

4. Knee to Chest Stretch

Lie down flat on your back for this stretch, and place your hands on either side. Raise your right knee as far as you can stretch it. Put your hands just below your bent knee on your shin and pull it closer to your body. Hold this position for 30 seconds to a minute.

Repeat on the other side. Then, repeat this 3 to 5 times on each leg, ensuring that the muscles of your lower back get in a proper stretch.

5. Rotation Stretch

For this one, you’ll need to lie down flat on your back and bring your knees up as far as you can to your chest. Imagine you’re sitting in a chair, with the floor as the back of your chair and your legs in an imaginary bottom of the chair.

Place your arms on either side of you, resting on the floor. Twist your body so that your legs go toward your right side as far as you can go. This stretch isn’t too difficult, so most people will be able to put their legs on the floor. Be mindful not to try and ensure that the opposite arm stays flat on the floor, as if you’re less flexible, it will naturally raise up a bit.

Hold the stretch for 30 to 60 seconds, or as long as feels comfortable. Return to center, then repeat on the other side.

6. Seated Spine Twist

If you’re a chronic back cracker, you’ll probably recognize this one as the position you get in to crack your back.

Sit down on the floor with both legs in front of you. Then, bend your left leg, keeping your left foot on the floor. Reach over and place your right elbow on the left leg and stretch your back out using the leverage of your elbow to your knee. You may hear a cracking noise, or you may not. Either way, you’ll get in a great stretch.

Repeat on the other side with the left elbow and right knee.

Helping Ease Lower Back Pain

Stretches for lower back pain are just one of the ways you can help control it, especially if the pain is due to tight muscles and tendons. However, it is only one strategy that may help you keep your pain and discomfort under control. Speak with your doctor about your specific situation if your lower back pain becomes so excruciating that it affects your day-to-day life.

For more information on health and fitness, check out the rest of our articles.


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