Posts Tagged ‘lower back pain relief’

3 Simple Back Pain Relief Techniques when Sitting for Long Hours

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

Most people fail to recognize how rudimentary activities such as sitting play a significant role in your back pain and how simple stretches can not only relieve the symptoms of back pain, but actually prevent them from occurring.  Sitting for long periods of time can one of the major reasons why people experience upper and lower back pain daily.  When you sit in one position for a long period of time, your hamstrings and hip flexors will start to tighten as well as your chest muscles. The tightness in these muscles can happen as quickly as 15 minutes.

When the hamstrings and hip flexors tighten, they pull on the pelvis creating stress into the lower back.  Once the pecs start to tighten, they pull the shoulder blades forward, causing stress on the neck.   Once those muscles tighten up, your  posture begins to become worse and the pain begins to increase.  The surface that you are sitting on can make the problem even worse if it is not supportive of your neck and back.

As a matter of fact, while I was sitting in the waiting room on jury duty the other day, I started experiencing some of this discomfort after sitting in jury duty today.  After sitting here for 45 minutes and  waiting for instructions, I started to notice how my leg muscles were feeling tight and my neck was starting to bother me.  At the onset of this uncomfortable feeling, I got up, walked around a little bit and then started stretching both my lower body and my upper body. Immediately I started feeling some relief in both my upper and lower body.

One of the things that stands out most to me, other than people not wanting to be here,  is their posture.  When we arrived this morning at 8, most people were sitting up tall, eagerly awaiting whether or not they were going to be called in.  Now that it is in the middle of the afternoon, people are slouching, rubbing their necks and squirming in their seats.  People’s sitting and standing postures are getting worse the longer we are in here.  I am noticing a lot of people who look uncomfortable and are hurting.  I have been able to stretch and walk around every 1/2 hour throughout the whole time I have been here.  I have been stretching my legs, pecs, biceps and neck.  I honestly believe this is what has helped me be able to make it throughout the day without having upper or lower back pain.

The three steps to help you avoid back pain when you have to sit for long periods of time are getting up and walking around, stretching your upper body and stretching your lower body.  Getting up and walking around whether to the bathroom or to get some water, it helps to get some blood flow through your body.  This simple amount of movement will help you when it comes time to stretch because the muscles will be less tense.

The second and third steps are stretching.  Stretching  the upper and lower body are equally important because they both are affected when you sit for long periods of time. Stretching the upper body consists of your pecs, biceps, shoulders and neck muscles.  Stretching the lower body consists of stretching the hamstrings, quads, calves, gluts and hip flexors.  All stretches should be light to medium in intensity and held for at least 40 seconds.

As you can see, the effects of sitting as related to lower back pain can be easily counteracted by applying simple stretching techniques in almost any environment.  I hope this gives those of you who sit a lot during the day some food for thought as well as a simple application for stretching while sitting in your chair.  I hope this gives those of you who sit a lot during the day some food for thought about stretching in your chair and how you can avoid suffering from upper and/or lower back pain.

Lower Back Pain Relief – Foot Mechanics and Footwear

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

In this video, Martin discusses the importance of proper foot mechanics and appropriate footwear for increased lower back pain relief. 

  • Discover whether you walk in a supinated or pronated position and how this effects lower back pain
  • Learn the 3 most important techniques for testing a shoes effectiveness
  • Identify the 2 most common mistakes people make when walking and how to avoid them
  • all this and more…

Lower Back Pain Relief Tips While Sitting

Friday, July 30th, 2010

Sitting is an essential daily function that plays a major role in back pain relief.  For most people, their sitting position as, it relates to the lower back pain never crosses their mind.  It is essential that you gain a better understanding how your habitual sitting positions are can contribute to lower back pain relief.           

Sitting in the wrong type of position, wrong type of surface or for too long may be the reason why you are experiencing lower back pain.  Sitting with your feet dangling, back reclined too far, too much lumbar support, not enough lumbar support, chair too low are many reasons why people have lower back pain.  If your job requires you to sit for many hours, choosing the right chair and position you will be in is vital to your lower back health.

Choosing the type of surface you are going to sit on is important.  If you are going to sit for hours watching a movie, paying bills or even reading a book, sitting on a low couch with little support is disaster waiting to happen.  If you are going to be sitting somewhere for hours at a time, make sure you have adequate support for your lower back and legs.

The amount of time you spend sitting each day may be the main reason why you experience or continue to experience lower back pain.  Every 60-90 minutes, you should be getting up from your chair, moving around and stretching to ensure that your leg muscles are not shortening and creating undue stress on the lower back.  Simple 40 second stretches for the lower legs and getting up every 60 minutes will help to reduce and possible eliminate all of your lower back symptoms.

How Sleeping Can Assist with Lower Back Pain Relief

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

The position you choose to sleep in can make the difference between waking up pain free or painful.  The most recommended position for sleeping to avoid lower back pain is on your back.  Sleeping on your back helps to ensure that all of your joints are in a neutral position which allows muscles and the body to relax.

Raising your legs up by placing pillows or supports under your thighs can be beneficial because it helps to place the pelvis in a neutral position and it helps with blood circulation back to the heart.  If you need to, place a pillow along your sides to ensure that you do not roll onto your side or onto your stomach.

Sleeping on your side is also okay, but many things can happen while sleeping that can cause or irritate your lower back pain.  One of the main things that people do when sleeping on their sides is to move the top leg into a fetal-like position.  That creates a big stretch in the gluts and hip region and causes tightness to occur in other muscle groups.  Upon waking the gluts and the hip area will be weaker because they were stretched out for hours while sleeping causing an unbalance and creating additional pain.

If you are to sleep on your side, place a pillow between your knees and ankles to keep the knees, hips and ankle on the same level.  This will help reduce the chance that you will move your top leg up to a fetal position.

The least recommended position for sleeping is stomach sleeping.  Stomach sleeping forces you to turn your head to one side for long periods of time.  When that happens, the muscles of the spine and neck are thrown out of balance and will eventually lead to back and possible neck pain.

Before you go to be tonight, please remember the basic to sleeping as they relate to back pain outlined in this article.

You can also visit http://youtube/stopsbackpainnow for videos demonstrating the methods outlined in this article as well as other helpful information on back pain relief.

Lower Back Pain Muscle Stretches

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Stretching can significantly reduce the symptoms and increase the effectiveness to lower back pain relief.  Stretching will help keep the muscles of the lower legs in the proper length-tension ratio. When specific muscles do not have the appropriate length-tension ratio, they create disproportionate muscle tension, arguably one of the leading causes of lower back pain. 

Specific stretches when performed correctly can restore balance and relieve the pain caused by disproportionate muscle tension.   Some of the most common muscles that require balance to stop lower back pain include: 

  • hamstrings and quads
  • gluts and hip flexors
  • external rotators of the hip and the ITB.

By keeping those muscle groups in a balanced state, it helps eliminate undo stress on the spinal column.  Your stretches should be of a light to medium intensity and be held for 40-50 seconds for each stretch.

Stretches can be performed before, during and after an exercise or physical movement.  Before an exercise you can do light intensity stretching, during and after an exercise you can do a more medium intensity stretch.

When you feel  discomfort in your lower back, you should stretch the  lower leg muscles identified above to see if you can alleviate the pain. 

Choosing not to stretch and waiting to address your condition will many times cause you to start compensating with other muscle groups creating additional stress and pain previously not associated with your lower back pain.  In order to prevent this, maintain a healthy stretching regime. 

For instructional videos related to this and other posts, please visit our StopsBackPainNow You Tube Channel