While this idea is a great one for the first 24 hours after injuring your back, prolonged inactivity can actually stiffen those injured muscles and make healing more difficult. Exercise on the other hand helps to strengthen the surrounding muscles and helps increase major blood flow to the injured area which promotes healing and often relieves the back pain making it more bearable. Exercising your back does not mean lifting weights or running a marathon. It means gentle exercise that helps stretch and strengthen your muscles. That being said here are 4 simple exercises that you can do at home that will help to relieve that back pain and strengthen your muscles to aid in healing and help prevent further injury.
Stand with both feet together or slightly apart in front of a door. Slowly extend your arms over your head and reach as far as possible over the door jam while keeping your feet flat. Hold that position to the count of 10. You should feel the muscles in your back begin to stretch which is the entire purpose of this exercise. By stretching the muscles slowly, you can alleviate lower back pain and strengthen your muscles in the bargain.
Heal Raises (Also Called Tip Toes)
Once again stand straight up with your feet flat on the floor, shoulders back and head up. Slowly raise your heels up and down about 10 times. This exercise will provide a gentle pull and strengthening of the muscles in your thighs, buttocks and lower back region. Helping to reduce pain and aid healing.
Lie flat on your back on the floor, slowly bend and straighten your knees one knee at a time alternating the legs. Bring your heel as close to your body as possible with each slide. Repeat 10 times. This exercise can be gradually increase to 20 times as the muscles become stronger and the pain lessens.
Straight Leg Raises
Once again lie flat on your back with one knee bent and the other leg straight. Tighten your abdominal muscles and slowly lift the straight leg about 6 to 8 inches off the floor. Hold it to the count of 6 and slowly lower it. Repeat changing legs. When starting out don’t overdo this exercise start at about 5 repetitions or less and gradually increase to 10 repetitions.
Using a heating pad for 20 minutes followed by an ice pack for the same length of time both before and after doing these strengthening exercisers may help you to get through them easier. If any of these exercises causes the pain to drastically worsen stop immediately and seek medical care. However, keep in mind that there will be some discomfort initially which will fade as your muscles heal and gain more strength. Continuing these exercises after your back heals as part of a regular routine may help prevent re injury to your back muscles.
HealthSource Chiropractic of Stillwater.
Dr. Matthew Fiebelkorn is a Stillwater Chiropractor who teaches,speaks, and writes about wellness and health issues for adults and children and on improving their quality of life through healthier lifestyle choices. For more information on Dr. Fiebelkorn, visit his web site. Or Call Today (651)300-0150!