There are several ways to avoid complications from back pain.
Did you know there are over three million visits to emergency departments each year for back pain symptoms? This can be prevented! And with the fall season in full swing, many of us will be out raking leaves (and in the next few months, maybe shoveling snow) – both high-risk activities when it comes to back pain and back injuries.
There are several ways to avoid complications from back pain. Back stretches and back exercises are the key.
Stretching the muscles of the lower back, shoulders, neck and chest can help keep the back in better alignment and improve posture. Stretching also helps relax tense muscles, which results from stress. Regular aerobic exercise, such as walking or swimming, also helps to strengthen and protect your back and spine.
Try this exercise for your upper and middle back:
- Kneel on the floor or other firm, comfortable surface.
- Position yourself so the tops of your feet are on the floor and your buttocks are resting on your lower legs and heels. While keeping your head facing forward, bring your head and shoulders down so your nose almost touches the floor.
- Extend your arms straight out over your head with your elbows straight so that your palms touch the floor.
- Slide your hands forward and your buttocks back as if trying to pull them in opposite directions.
- Hold this position for 30 to 40 seconds and then relax.
This stretch will help relax and lengthen the postural muscles of your entire back and the gluteal muscles in your buttocks.