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5 Moves to Erase Back Pain After a Tired & Terrible Day

You probably know from personal experience that back pain can kill your mood and ruin your day. Unfortunately, it’s a fairly common occurrence – statistics from the American Chiropractic Association show that as many as 80 percent of Americans will experience it at least once in their life. As the world’s leading cause of disability, lower back pain is particularly bothersome.

Awkward Sit

Why are so many people suffering from back pain?

Since your back is nearly always engaged, a lot of activities, movements, or postures can contribute to the problem the NHS warns.

•    Awkward positions
•    Carrying heavy objects
•    Slouching or hunching
•    Overextending your back when stretching
•    Overexertion during physical activity

Of course, there are other underlying medical conditions that could be causing your back pain. If your pain is chronic, you should see a doctor to rule out other possibilities or complications. However, if you’re like many Americans hunched over at their desks every day, improving your posture and changing your daily habits to include these five easy stretches and exercises recommended by the Mayo Clinic and Arthritis Research UK should help relieve your pain.

1.    Bring your knee to your chest

If you’ve ever taken a yoga class, you’re probably familiar with this move, which often accompanies the cool down.
•    Lie down facing the ceiling on a soft surface like a towel or mat.
•    Bend both legs so your feet are flat on the floor.
•    Bring one bent knee up toward your chest by wrapping your palms around your shin to press your leg into your chest.
•    Hold the pose for about 5 seconds.
•    Release your leg and lower it gently to the ground.
•    Repeat with the opposite leg.

2.    Rotate your legs

This position is great for your lower back.
•    Stay lying down with your feet flat and knees bent, just like at the start of the first position.
•    Keep your hands above your head or lay them both straight out to the side, so you look like a giant T.
•    Slowly rotate both bent legs to one side, making sure your feet are still touching the floor.
•    Hold the position for 5 seconds then slowly rate both legs back up.
•    Repeat with the other side.

3.    Tighten your tummy and lift your tush

•    Now that you’ve finished the first two exercises, you should be back in the original starting pose.
•    This time, stay in the original position but tighten your abdominals so that your back lays flat on the ground. Many times people have a slight arc in the lower back or lumbar muscle. Here, you should feel like your abs are tightening and elongating so your back lies flat.
•    Hold 5 seconds before releasing.
•    To go one step further, lift your butt off the floor until your hips are in line with your knees.
•    Hold 5 seconds.

4.    Do the cat and cow position

In yoga, these two related positions are often called cat and cow because of the curving and arching in the pack.
•    Time to switch up the starting position. This time, position yourself over your mat or towel, so your body is supported by the weight of your hands and knees. Your hands should rest directly below your shoulders while your knees rest bellow your hips.
•    Breathe in and curl your back so you are bringing your stomach toward the floor.
•    Breathe out and arch your back, so you are bringing your abs toward the ceiling. Let your head and neck relax by looking down.
•    Repeat the sequence about 5 times.

5.    Squeeze your shoulder blades

This move is a good reminder to keep good posture, as well as providing relief for your upper back.
•    Sit in a normal seated position with a straight back and good posture.
•    Use the muscles in your back to bring your shoulder blades together. This will also raise your chest a bit.
•    Relax the tension after 5 seconds.
•    Repeat about 5 times.

Back pain is more than bothersome, it can interfere with your daily life and discourage you from doing the activities necessary to maintain your health and fitness, like going to the gym, exercising, or weight lifting. If your back hurts, you’ll probably just want to lie in bed all day and chow down on some unhealthy comfort food while you binge on Netflix shows. Instead of falling into this downward spiral, incorporate these moves into your day to help ease and prevent back pain in the first place.


American Chiropractic Association

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