Sitting too long is NOT as bad as smoking

Sitting too long is NOT as bad as smoking

Previously, bed rest was advised to help with a bad back, but it is now known that people who stay active will probably recover faster, according to NHS Choices.

This can be difficult at first, but do not be discouraged – your pain will gradually improve. Consider taking analgesics if the pain keeps you from continuing normally.

When you go back to work, you can return to a normal pattern of activity and possibly distract you from the pain.

Here are some exercises from physiotherapist Nick Sinfield to help reduce lower back pain such as tension, stiffness and pain.

Get used to the movements gently at the start and check how far you can go in each position without feeling pain. Try to perform this routine at least once a day, if the pain allows it.

You can complement this routine with hiking, cycling and water sports.

Get medical advice before starting this backache and stop immediately if you have pain.

Stretch down to heels

Starting position: kneel on all fours, knees under hips and hands under shoulders. Do not lean your lower back. Keep your neck long, your shoulders back, and do not lock your elbows.

Action: Slowly take your butt back, keeping the natural curvature of the spine. Hold the stretch for a deep breath and return to the starting position.

Repeat 8 to 10 times.

On the heels you train the spine

On the heels you train the spine

Tips:

  • Avoid sitting on your heels if you have a knee problem
  • Make sure you have the correct positioning with a mirror
  • Stretch only as far as it feels comfortable

Knee rolls

Starting position: Lie on your back. Put a small flat pillow or book under your head. Keep your knees bent and together. Keep your upper body relaxed and gently insert your chin.

Action: Roll your knees to one side, followed by your pelvis, leaving both shoulders on the floor. Hold the stretch for a deep breath and return to the starting position.

Repeat the pages alternately 8 to 10 times.

Knee rolls also work by stretching and mobilizing the spine

Knee rolls also work by stretching and mobilizing the spine

Tips:

  • Only move as far as you feel comfortable
  • Put a pillow between your knees to relax

Rear extensions

Starting position: Lie on your stomach and lean on the elbows, which will lengthen the spine. Keep your shoulders back and neck long.

Action: Hold your neck long and back up with your hands down. You should feel a slight stretch in the abdominal muscles as you lean backwards. Breathe and hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Return to the starting position.

Repeat 8 to 10 times.

Do not lean your neck back when performing this back extension

Do not lean your neck back when performing this back extension

Tips:

  • Do not bend your neck backwards
  • Keep your hips on the floor

Deep tummy tuck

Starting position: Lie on your back. Put a small, flat pillow or book under your head. Bend your knees and keep your feet straight and hip-width. Keep your upper body relaxed and gently insert your chin.

Action: As you exhale, tense the muscles of the pelvis and lower abdominals as if you were making an imaginary zipper along your abdomen. Maintain this gentle contraction as you breathe out of your abdomen for 5 to 10 breaths, and relax.

Repeat 5 times.

These exercises strengthen the deep supportive muscles around the spine

These exercises strengthen the deep supportive muscles around the spine

Tips:

  • This is a slow, gentle tightening of the lower abdominal region. Do not pull these muscles with more than 25% of your maximum strength
  • Make sure that you do not tense your neck, shoulders or legs

Basin is tilting

Starting position: Lie on your back. Put a small, flat pillow or book under your head. Bend your knees and keep your feet straight and hip-width. Keep your upper body relaxed and gently insert your chin.

Action: Smooth the lower back gently into the floor and tighten your abdominal muscles. Now lean your pelvis towards your heels until you feel a slight bulge in the lower back, your back muscles contract and return to the starting position.

Repeat this 10 to 15 times, moving your pelvis back and forth in a slow rocking motion.

Pelvic tipping is recommended to stretch and strengthen the lower back

Pelvic tipping is recommended to stretch and strengthen the lower back

Tips:

  • Make sure that your deep abdominal muscles work consistently
  • Do not press through the neck, shoulders or feet

Change: Put one hand on your stomach and the other under your lower back to feel the right muscles.

Source: NHS choices

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