Lower back pain, technically known as lumbar pain, affects nearly everyone at some point. The lumbar spine, extending from the lower ribs to the tailbone, is one of the most common sources of discomfort for American adults. The numerous causes of lumbar pain our spine specialists diagnose and treat at Virginia Orthopaedic include:
- Sudden movements such as falls, which place too much stress on the lower back, often causing strains and sprains.
- Heavy lifting and improper lifting techniques can put undue pressure on the lower back, especially when your legs and gluteal muscles are not engaged.
- Poor standing posture may pull on your back, especially when your shoes are not supportive or you’re on your feet for many hours daily. Keeping your weight evenly distributed between your feet and wearing supportive shoes can help.
- Poor seated posture is one of the most common causes of lower back pain, because slouching can displace the spine’s natural alignment, causing pain and discomfort.
- Overweight and inactivity perpetuate lower back pain. If you can, go for a walk during your lunch hour, concentrating on keeping your spine lengthened.
Fortunately, we can suggest several stretches you can perform at home to relieve discomfort, if your orthopaedist has approved them as safe for you. While yoga classes and massage are also great options, home stretching is a simple, accessible and free means of relief. Here are three excellent stretches to address lumbar pain from the comfort of your own home:
- Lying Knee Twist: While lying on your back, keep one leg extended and bring the other knee to the chest. Draw that knee across the body until your hips are stacked and you feel a gentle twist in the low back. Be sure to stretch both sides.
- Child’s Pose: This is a popular and well-known yoga pose for rest, but it is also a great position for lower back relief. From a tabletop (hands-and-knees) position, bring your knees out wider than your hips, your toes together behind you, and sink your hips back toward your feet. This pose can be enjoyed with your knees together for a slightly more intense back stretch.
- Forward Fold with Knees Bent: From standing with your feet hip-width apart, fold forward as if you were going to touch your toes. Instead, focus on bending your knees deeply enough so that your chest could rest on the tops of your thighs, and allow your lower back to release. Bend your arms and grab your opposite elbows for a bit more pull on your back.
If you suffer from chronic lumbar pain or another orthopaedic condition, please contact us at (540) 404-4251 or request an appointment online. Our providers at Virginia Orthopaedic are board certified and double-specialize in orthopaedics and sports medicine. Our spine specialists frequently include stretches, activity modification and anti-inflammatory medication in their arsenal of conservative treatments. These noninvasive measures, combined with rest, often help reduce the pain of spinal conditions or injuries and help to restore spinal function.