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Three stretches to relieve back pain

Riddle Hospital March 3, 2014 General Wellness

More than half of Americans will experience back pain during their lifetime. It doesn’t take anything too serious to prompt back pain. Daily activities like vacuuming, bending down to pick up the laundry, or reaching for the top shelf can all contribute to acute back pain.

Up until now, you’ve probably treated back pain and soreness with pain relievers and a night relaxing on the couch. But sitting down isn’t the only answer to back pain. There are simple stretches and exercises you can do to help relieve the mild back pain that occurs as a result of your daily routine.

“Taking 10 or 15 minutes to stretch at the beginning and end of the day can prevent some of the lower back pain that many people experience,” explains Katy Coughlin, manager of the Riddle Hospital Fitness Center.

The next time you’re in for a long day at home, outdoors, or in the office, start and end your day with this routine to alleviate or lessen your back pain.

This one is especially for those who will be at their desks all day, but anyone can take a seat and try it. Place your hands on the desk, kick your hips back into the chair, and lower your chest towards the ground.

  • Place your foot on a sturdy box or chair, and then lean forward from your hips until you feel a stretch in your hamstring.
  • Lie on the ground on your back and bring both knees to your chest. If needed, you can wrap your arms around your legs to hold them there.

With each of these stretching exercises, remember to inhale and exhale. Hold each stretch for 15-60 seconds. By performing this routine regularly, you should be able to bid back pain goodbye.

Aches and pains are bound to happen, but dealing with it more than once or twice a week could be a sign of something more. If you suspect you may be experiencing a more permanent, chronic back pain, make an appointment with your physician.