Stretches to Do at Your Desk for Back Pain
The United States seems to have a collective back ache. More than 80 percent of Americans suffer from back pain at some point in their lives, according to the National Institutes of Health. Serious back pain can be extraordinarily debilitating, affecting your ability to walk, sleep comfortably and drive. If you experience back pain, visit the Jacksonville orthopedics specialists at Southeast Ortho to get a thorough assessment and diagnosis. Modifications to your everyday life, including performing stretches at your desk, can be an effective way to alleviate back pain.
Stand Up, Sit Down
Standing up seems like the simplest activity in the world, but it engages a remarkable number of muscles in your back and abs. Furthermore, we do not always realize how much we rely on chair handles or other objects for balance when standing up. To stretch your back muscles, keep your hands to your side while standing up. Then, sit down again and repeat 10 times. This is a simple stretch that can be performed almost anywhere throughout the day.
For those of us who work in office environments, sitting at a desk all day can lead to shoulder and upper back tension. Over time, this contributes to significant back pain. To stretch your upper back and shoulders, begin by raising your shoulders up toward your ears. Hold them there for five seconds before releasing. Repeat 10 times to keep your muscles loose.
The torso twist is another effective back exercise. Take a breath in. As you exhale, twist to the left and grab the back of your chair with your left hand. Place your right hand on the arm of the chair. Then, twist your torso around as far as is comfortable. Try to look directly behind yourself into the room, holding the stretch for 10 seconds. Slowly return to a resting position before stretching the other side of your body. Repeat at least three times.
Our Jacksonville orthopedic specialists recommend this move to patients with back pain. Wrap your arms around yourself, placing your left hand on your right shoulder and your right hand on your left shoulder. Slowly breathe in and out. Focus on releasing the muscles in the space between your shoulder blades.
Another good stretch for the upper back, arm crosses begin when you stretch an arm in front of you. Then, grab the elbow of that arm with your opposite hand. Pull your arm across your chest, focusing on releasing tension in your upper back and shoulders.