Most people are familiar with some form of lower back pain. Back pain is the leading cause of disability globally, impacting nearly 30 percent of Americans at any given time. Back pain is caused by numerous conditions, injuries, and lifestyle choices. You can reduce your risk for back pain by learning more about the causes and risk factors associated with it.
Stretching is one of the best ways to treat and prevent back pain. Knowing how to stretch your lower back can help alleviate back pain symptoms, regain your range of motion, and prevent back pain in the future.
Common Causes of Lower Back Pain
Back pain is most commonly caused by:
- Injuries to the back
- Medical conditions, such as sciatica, scoliosis, or osteoarthritis
- Poor posture
- Lifting or pulling heavy objects with your back instead of your legs
- Prolonged inactivity
- Carrying an overloaded backpack
- Wearing high heels
- Lifting and twisting at the same time
- Muscle spasms
- Herniated or slipped discs
- Tight Hamstrings
- Torn pulled muscle/ligament
Back pain may be mild, acute, or chronic, depending on its cause. Taking back pain seriously and creating a treatment plan can help you reduce symptoms, heal your back, and prevent a recurrence. This may include learning how to stretch your lower back, resting, using ice or heat, or taking anti-inflammatory medication.
Lower Back Pain Risk Factors
Certain individuals are more susceptible to lower back pain due to lifestyle choices, age, illness, and obesity. You are more likely to experience back pain if you:
- Are elderly
- Are overweight or obese
- Live a sedentary lifestyle
- Work in a physically demanding position
- Slouch at your desk
How Stretching Benefits You
Stretching provides numerous benefits, including:
- Increased flexibility
- Increased range of motion
- Increased blood flow
- Improved posture
- Stress relief
- Reduction in severity of frequency of tension headaches
- Reduced pain and inflammation
To benefit the most from stretching, it’s essential to first learn about the best ways to stretch your lower back.
5 Best Ways to Stretch Your Lower Back
Knowing how to stretch your lower back can help you alleviate back pain and inflammation while strengthening your back and preventing pain in the future. Here are five of the best stretches you can do for your lower back.
1. Child’s Pose
Get onto your hands and knees. Your knees should be directly under your hips and your hands should be under your shoulders. As you slowly shift your hips back towards your heels, drop your head and chest downward while extending your arms forward to reach for the wall in front of you. If this stretch causes pain, place a pillow beneath your stomach to lessen your lower back muscles' stretch. Hold the child’s pose for at least 20 to 30 seconds.
2. Cat Stretch
Similarly to the child’s pose, begin this stretch on your hands and knees with your knees directly under your hips and your hands directly beneath your shoulders. Start with your spine parallel to the ground and slowly move your back upward. Hold this position for five seconds before you relax and lower your stomach as you gently arch your lower back. Stay in this position for another five seconds. For the best results, repeat the cat stretch for at least 30 seconds.
3. Knee-to-Chest Stretch
This stretch is done by lying on your back with your knees drawn up and your feet on the floor. Rest your hands behind your knees or just below your kneecaps. To perform this stretch, slowly hold your knees towards your chest. Hold this position for up to 30 seconds. For the best stretch, try rocking your hips up and down or from side to side to help massage your lower back before returning to the starting position.
4. The Pelvic Tilt
Similarly to the knee-to-chest stretch, you will begin flat on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. For this stretch, keep your arms and hands flat at your side. Next, try to relax your lower back. Use your core muscles and flatten your lower back against the mat by bringing your pelvis upward. Repeat this stretch up to 15 times for the maximum benefit.
5. Bridge Pose
To begin the bridge pose, lie on your back with your knees drawn up and your feet flat on the floor. Be sure to keep your feet hip-width apart with your heels drawn in close to your glutes. Press down onto your feet while you lift your hips. Once elevated, try to soften the muscles around your sacrum. Hold this position for at least 30 seconds.
Stretch Your Lower Back Using the CoreStretch
Stretching provides numerous health benefits, including increased flexibility, range of motion, and blood flow. It’s also key to healing and preventing back pain. Initially developed for physical therapists to help patients achieve a safe lower back stretch, the CoreStretch helps you stretch your lower back by using your body’s natural traction. This device delivers one of the best ways to stretch your lower back to alleviate pain, strengthen the lower back, and prevent further injury.
In addition to relieving back pain, the CoreStretch can also be used to treat symptoms of:
- Shoulder pain
- Knee pain
- Piriformis pain
- Shin splints
- Arthritis and osteoporosis
- Tight hamstrings
- Pelvic and groin muscle pain
The CoreStretch is adjustable to provide multiple levels of stretching. It can be light-weight and collapsible and can be used while seated or while standing.
Do you suffer from back pain? We can help. Contact us today to learn more about our products and pain solutions.
OTHER RELATED TOPICS:
LOWER BACK PAIN EXERCISES
IS LOWER BACK PAIN KEEPING YOU ON THE SIDELINE?
TOP RUNNING INJURY NO. 5: LOWER BACK PAIN
BACK PAIN RELIEF: PART 1
10 MINUTE BACK PAIN RELIEF: CORESTRETCH
PLEASE NOTE: The information on this website and article is for information only and should not be used as a substitute for consulting your doctor. Consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and rehabilitation