BACK PAIN- PRACTICAL TIPS
Shane McLean, ACE Certified Personal Trainer with the T. Boone Pickens YMCA
Today’s a bad back day. Again. Couldn’t have come at a worst time because you are
A. Busy at work
B. Out in the yard
C. Driving all day.
D. Or your feet constantly.
You decide enough is enough and you google low back pain, looking for a practical solution. But you get 130 million hits. WHAT!!! Where do I start? I haven’t got time to search! So you reach for the Advil once again to get instant relief.
This can get old. Personally I refuse to use Advil for my back pain. Advil and other over the counter medications have numerous side effects and will lose their effectiveness when used in the long term. Instead let’s use our body to heal our pain.
Here is a list tried and true tricks I have used throughout my years to get relief. They are Shane ”The Balance Guy” approved.
BEST STRECTH TO DO IN THE MORNING
Stand up straight and put your palms of your hands on your low back. Arch your back, feeling a stretch in your abdominals and shoulders. Return to starting position and relax. Repeat 5 times.
WHEN YOU HAVE 5 MINS
Static back with breathing- Lie on your back, with both legs bent at right angles with your feet resting on a chair or couch. Rest your arm on the floor, at shoulder level and let your low back settle in to the floor. Breathe into your belly letting your stomach rise and fall. Do this for five to ten minutes.
SITTING AT WORK ALL DAY
Sit on your sit bones- to find your sit bones, feel with your hands underneath your bottom and find the two boney protrusions at the base of your pelvis. Once you have done that, rock your pelvis slightly forward to bring yourself into neutral spine. This will reinforce good posture whenever you are sitting down.
WHEN DRIVING FOR LONG PERIODS
Sit back into your left hip- Sit up nice and tall and shift your left hip into your seat so your left low back is flat. Your left knee should be behind your right knee. Engage your inner left thigh by shift your left leg towards your right. Keep that tension. Adjust as needed.
WHEN YOU’RE TRYING TO GO TO SLEEP
Sleeping on your back- This will improve your posture because your spine gets support from the bed and also puts your shoulders in a better position, helping to minimize your back pain.
WHEN YOU HAVE BEEN ON YOU FEET ALL DAY
Stretch those hips- Take a load of your feet and do this. Get in a half kneeling position, front ankle underneath your knee and back knee underneath your hip. Stand up nice and tall and engage your glute muscle on the back leg and feel a stretch in the front of your hip. Lean forward slightly. Repeat on other side. Do 2 to 3 sets of 30 seconds.
So next time your back is bothering you, refer to this list (which you are going to keep handy, right?) rather than reaching for your pain pills. Over time your body will thank you.
Oh, one last thing. Remember to sit up straight, stand tall and protect your back!