Spine Care and Back Health: Tips, and Exercises
What is Spine Care and how does it affect Back Health?
Spine care is simply caring for your spinal cord, whether it is in the form of exercises, medications, or proper posture and diet. Spine care greatly affects back health or the overall health condition of your back. This is because your spine is the primary support system of your back, along with the muscles, and other soft tissues in your back.
Simply put, by caring for your spine, you improve your back health. Spine care is especially helpful whenever you are experiencing back pain. Back pain can stem from any number of causes, such as a herniated disc or strained muscles in your back. Spine care is meant to be an active effort to improve your back health but it can also be used as a means of achieving some level of pain relief and comfort, to allow you to navigate through the tedium of everyday life.
Here are some tips to help accomplish proper spine care and achieve better back health:
- Allowing your Spine to Rest when Sleeping - Back Health is oftentimes improved by sleeping, as it is one of the only moments in the day where your back can really rest itself. However sometimes, the back is not really able to rest whenever we are sleeping, and this is because our spine cannot rest due to improper posture while sleeping. A trick to a proper spinal rest and back health while you sleep is to have a mattress and pillow that allow your spine to rest in a supported way.
- Having Shoes that Support your Spine - what most people don’t think about is the normal routines in our everyday life that involve running and walking can also affect our back health. This is the reason why your choice of shoes or footwear can largely affect your back health and can be a form of spine care. Buy proper shoes that provide an adequate supportive base, and that the shoe is snug but not too tight.
- Having a Massage - having a massage every once in a while give great therapeutic and physical relief to the body. A good massage done properly on your back can supply endorphins to your body, effectively acting as a painkiller.
- Practice proper posture when sitting - the proper posture whenever you are sitting matters as far as back health is concerned. This is because the discs in the lower spine feel more pressure whenever sitting down than standing up. Proper posture can be achieved passively simply by having an ergonomic chair to sit on. Avoid slouching whenever you are sitting, and avoid leaning forward too much.
You should also lessen the total time when you are sitting, and getting up and stretching every once in a while certainly helps.
- Proper Exercise of Core - Your core muscles, namely your abdominal muscles and lower back muscles need to be properly exercised and fit so that they will be strong enough to support the spine. This will allow less pressure on your back and will ease the stress it feels from day to day.
Some exercises aside from core exercises that can help achieve proper back health are as follows:
1. Knee to Chest Stretch - This type of exercise can be done by doing the following steps:
- Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor
- Use both hands to pull up one knee and press it to your chest
- Tighten your abdomen and press your spine on the floor. Hold this position for 5 seconds.
- Return to the starting position and do it with the opposite leg.
- Return to the starting position and this time, do it with both legs.
2. Lower Back Rotational Stretch - the lower back rotational stretch can also be a good exercise to promote back health. It can be done by doing the following steps:
- Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor
- Keep your shoulders firm on the floor, and then roll your bent knees to one side. Hold this position for 5- 10 seconds.
- Return to the starting position and then do it on the opposite side.
3. Seated Lower Back Rotational Stretch - now this is an exercise you can do whilst be seated in your swiveling office chair, and it is a convenient way to promote back health while working.
- Begin by sitting on a rotating chair or stool.
- Cross your right leg over your left leg and brace your left elbow against the outside of your knee.
- Twist and stretch to the side, and hold this position for 10 seconds.
- Repeat on the opposite side.