Are you feeling back pain after being quarantined to your home? You may be wondering, “Why is this? I’ve barely left the couch!” Well, therein lies the issue.
The sedentary lifestyle that I’m sure many people have experienced since being quarantined to their homes can actually lead to more aches, pains, and discomfort than one may think – especially in the back.
Your body, quite simply, was made to move! With gyms and exercise classes closing down for the time being, it can be difficult to find the motivation to get your daily physical activity while sitting at home. Luckily, there are several easy exercises you can do on your own to relieve your back pain and get moving!
Always exercise and stretch within your comfort zone. Never push into pain and if you are unsure of doing any of the exercises below, simply consult your physical therapist first.
6 exercises to stretch those back muscles:
- Lumbar Rotation Stretch in Lying. Back giving you troubles? Try a Lumbar Rotation Stretch in Lying. Lying sideways with your top knee bent and bottom knee straight, gently rotate your torso so your head is facing the opposite direction of your legs. Hold the stretch and then switch sides. This will stretch out your back and get you feeling comfortable once again!
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/333092920/1dbb30daae
- Bird Dog (Leg Slide). With major businesses shutting down, we know how disappointing it is to not be able to attend the weekly yoga classes you enjoy so much. Fortunately, you can bring the same yoga stretches to your own home. Begin on the floor with your knees bent beneath you and your hands flat in front of you, so your back is flat toward the ceiling. Stretch your left arm out in front of you and your right leg out behind you, so your toes are pointing down at the ground. Hold this stretch and then repeat on the opposite side, with your right arm and your left leg. The Bird Dog (Leg Slide) exercise is great at targeting the back muscles to give you that relieving stretch you’re looking for!
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/371130374/85ad5de4ee
- Hip Bias Lunges (Back Heel Down). Who doesn’t love a good lunge? This is a great exercise to get you moving. As a bonus, it not only targets your back but also focuses on your knee muscles. Begin standing in a slight lunge position with one leg slightly bent out in front of you and the other leg straight behind you. Lean your torso forward so it is almost in a 90 degree angle with the floor (this will cause your back leg to bend, as well). Hold this stretch and continue reps on the side you are on, then switch sides repeating the same steps.
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/391227766/dc90917bdc
- Standing Hip Abduction 45 Degree Angle Back Arom. This exercise may have a lengthy name, but we promise it’s not that difficult! For this exercise, you will need a chair or something else to steady yourself. Stand with your left hand on the back of the chair and place your right hand on your hip. Keeping your back straight and face forward, slowly kick your back leg out behind you until you feel the stretch in your back. Continue a few reps and then switch sides, placing your left hand on your hip and kicking your left leg out behind you. Make sure to always keep the opposite hand on the chair to steady yourself.
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/285854056/0165cea4f4
- Standing Shoulder Flex/Hip Extension With Back Arch (Wall). Another exercise that has a lengthy name but is very easy to do! For this exercise, you will begin standing with your hands outstretched directly in front of you on a wall. In a fluid “swinging” motion, extend your right arm and left leg behind you so your back is arched, then bring them both toward the wall. Continue doing this in fluid motions. After a few reps, repeat this exercise on the other side of your body, with your left arm and right leg.
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/394420569/71808708d0
- Neural Mobility SLR (Outward Turn). Looking for a great way to stretch your back, legs, and glutes at the same time? This exercise is for you! Begin by laying down on your back with both arms clasped around your right hamstring. Raise that leg in the air, keeping the left one bent with your feet flat on the ground. Flex your right foot that is in the air so that the bottom of your foot is flat facing the ceiling, then point that foot so that your toes are straight up toward the ceiling. Then, slowly bring that leg back down to a bent position between your hands. Continue for a few reps and then switch legs, repeating the same steps.
Here is a video for your reference: https://vimeo.com/370059225/1087fe3a40
If you have any questions about any of these exercises or if you are looking for more ways to relieve back pain during the quarantine, contact Pittman Physical Therapy at any time. We want to make sure you are as comfortable as possible while also staying active at home!