Have you ever had lower back pain? Chances are that you have with lower back pain being one of the most common reason people seek medical care. There are many conditions that can cause lower back pain. It may be due to a disc injury in the lumbar region of your spine. It may be from a sprain of the ligaments of the sacroiliac or SI joint. Whatever the reason is, it's helpful to know the best stretching exercises for lower back pain. Helpful as we are, we're happy to share those stretches with you.
5 Stretches for Lower Back Pain
It's probably easiest to watch the video above, but we also included step-by-step, written instructions:
The hamstrings connect from the pelvis to the back of the knee. Tight hamstrings are often a cause of low back pain. To stretch the hamstrings there are many stretches but an easy one can be done sitting at the office or on the couch watching TV. You first put one of your heels on the ground in front of you making your leg as straight as possible. You then try to touch your toes with both hands with the opposite hand on top. You should be feeling a stretch in the back of you leg and you might also feel the stretch in the low back too. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. You can then switch legs and do the other side.
The piriformis is a muscle deep in your buttock area below the glutes. This muscle can cause a lot of pain in the low back and can even cause sciatic pain. To do this stretch you can do it in a seated position as well. Cross one of your legs over the other. Your legs should be in a figure 4 position. In this position you want to lean forward making sure that your knee stays parallel to the ground. You should be feeling a stretch in your buttock on the same side of the leg that is in the figure 4 position. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. You can then switch legs and do the other side.
The quadriceps muscles on the front of your legs connect from the front of your hips or pelvis and go into your knee. Getting these muscles to relax can help put less strain on the pelvis which can help decrease low back pain. The easiest way to stretch the quads is to stand up. It is best to stand near a wall or something to hold on to because you will need to stand on one leg. With the same sided arm you are going to grab the same sided ankle of your leg. When you grab your leg you need to point your knee cap to the ground. Your hip joint should be as straight as possible and your knee joint will be as bent as it can be with you grabbing the ankle. With this you should be feeling a stretch down the front of your leg. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. You can then switch legs and do the other side.
The iliopsoas muscle (also called the psoas for short) is the primary hip flexor of the leg. It connects from the lumbar spine to the thigh. It is used to bring your leg off the ground especially when climbing stairs or going up an incline. This muscle is very commonly tight and is a common culprit in low back pain due to its direct attachment to the low back. A good way to stretch it is you want to get in a kneeling position with the side you want to stretch having the knee on the ground and the other side having the foot on the ground. In this position you want to push the hip on the side with the knee on the ground forward. You then want to side bend your low back away from the kneeling side with the kneeling side arm over the head. You also want to twist your back away from the kneeling side. You want to find the right position where you feel a stretch on the front of the hip on the kneeling side. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds. You can then switch legs and do the other side.
Prone Press Up
The prone press up or cobra stretch position isn't necessarily a stretch exercise hybrid. It does stretch the abdominal muscles but the purpose of this exercise is to promote extension in the low back. This exercise is great for most low back injuries. It is really good for disc injuries, types of sciatica pain, and also sprains and strains to the lumbar spine and the SI joints. To do this exercise you want to lie face down on the ground, bed, or a yoga mat. Laying face down put your arms at about shoulder width apart at the height of your shoulders. Now you just push up with your arms which will arch your back. You want to arch your back as much as possible without letting the front of your hips come off the ground. You can hold the arched up position for a couple seconds and come back down. On average doing this about 10 repetitions every couple hours will be helpful for most people.
Visit Our Roseville Chiropractic Clinic
Now that you know the best stretching exercises for lower back pain, put them to use. If you're still experiencing pain or want to know more about non-invasive treatment options, do not hesitate to contact us.