Stretches to Tackle Low Back Pain

Lets face it. Some of us do not love the holidays as much as others. Why? For some, the holiday season means a lot of traveling. A lot of traveling means uncomfortable small seats and back pain that would make us grumpier than scrooge himself.

One of the reasons why back pain occurs is when you are in a static position for a long period of time. Our bodies were made to move and are not meant to be in the same position for multiple hours. For that reason, your muscles get tight and eventually starts aching.

Here are 5 stretches to reduce low back pain that can help bring back the Holly in your Holiday.

 

#1. Cat Stretch

Purpose: To improve spinal mobility and improve the flexibility of muscles along your spine and back. 

How:   1. Go on your hands and knees.

2. Make sure your arms are underneath your shoulders and your knees are under your hips at a 90 degree angle. Arch your back and drop your head to make the shape of an upside down letter U or like an angry cat. 

# 2. Hamstring Stretch

Purpose: To improve hamstring flexibility and to reduce low back tension due to a tight hamstring. 

How:  1. Sit on the ground.

2. Reach as far forward towards your toes until you feel a stretch.  

3. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute and switch to other leg.

#3. Piriformis Stretch

Purpose: To improve piriformis muscle flexibility which improve your hips mobility. The         more flexible your hips are, the less strain you will have on you back. 

How:  1. Lay on your back.

2. Place your right ankle over your left thigh and let your right knee fall to the right in the shape of a figure 4.

3. Grab your left thigh with both hands and pull it towards your chest until you feel a stretch in your right buttock.

#4.  Prayer Stretch

Purpose: To improve the flexibility of your quadratus lumborum and your latissimus dorsi. 

How:  1. Start with your knees on the ground. 

2 .While you reach forward with your hands, sit backwards as close to your feet as possible until you feel a stretch across your back. 

#5. Single Knee To Chest Stretch

Purpose: To improve the flexibility of the muscles behind your hip and your low back. 

How:   1. Lay on your back. 

2. Grab behind your right thigh with both hands and pull your leg towards your chest until you feel a stretch behind your right buttock or low back. 

Print these stretches out and take them with you as you travel this holiday season. Do each stretch 2 times a day, once in the morning and once at night. Hold each stretch for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Take the time to take care of yourself so you can enjoy holidays pain free and really get the most out of the time you spend with your loved ones. My family is one of the reasons why I choose to take care of my health. What is your reason?

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Photographer Cover Photo: Juliann Cheryl