A gentle stretching routine can be an an effective way to relieve back pain, as long as you are working within your range of motion that is pain-free. New exercise may sometimes increase discomfort temporarily as your body gets used to the movement, but the pain should ease quickly.

Stretching for Back Health: Essential Exercises for Flexibility

Start on all fours, with your hands spread shoulder-width apart. Bring your hips forward as you extend backward, arching the lower back (cat stretch).

Stretching the muscles in the lower back will alleviate back pain and help prevent further injury. It can also improve posture, which is important for overall health and preventing a dowager’s hump.

Lay flat on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat. Then, lift one of your legs to your chest until you feel a comfortable stretch. This stretch targets the piriformis muscle, which can ease lower back pain or tightness in the buttocks.

If you’re flection-sensitive, meaning that leaning forward causes discomfort, you should consider starting with a small comfortable arc of motion and making it larger as your back becomes stronger. Also, make sure you always do these exercises on a clean and hard surface. If you experience any discomfort then stop the exercise and consult your doctor or physical therapist. To reap the most benefits, you should try to stretch for at least 60 second each day.

Targeted Hip Stretches to Alleviate Lower Back Discomfort

Stretching the hips can help loosen the lower back. Jamie Costello M.S.C., fitness director at Pritikin’s Longevity + Spa in Miami she suggests adding hip-opening exercise to your stretching routine can improve your posture and improve the flexibility of your spine.

The cat-cow is among the most popular back stretches. It improves flexibility and mobility while targeting the muscles in the shoulders, hips and the spine. This exercise is safe for the majority of people and can be performed at a desk, but make sure that you keep the stretches within an acceptable range.

Lay on your back, with both legs bent. Place the bottom of each leg on a flat surface to provide support. Slowly move your right leg forward until it comes to touch the outside of your left knee, while lowering your body towards the floor.

Outer Thigh Stretching: Understanding its connection to the lower back

Stretch your thighs outwards in case your hips or lower spine are tight. The muscles of the thigh’s outer are called the abductors and they assist in moving your legs towards the side and stabilize the pelvis. Connect your fingers behind the knee while lying on your back. Lift the leg towards your upper body and you will feel a gentle stretch at the back of your leg. You should hold it for 30-60 seconds, then repeat on the other leg.

This exercise is gentle, and it will reach the front of your upper thigh. You may be uncomfortable at first but do not do more than you feel comfortable with. If you experience sharp discomfort or tingling, stop the exercise immediately and consult with your doctor.

If you’re having trouble finding time to exercise and exercises, this video will help you do an easy routine that can be completed within a mere minute. Cassy’s catchy music and quirky personality make this workout fun to follow along with.

The arms, the triceps and the lower back

Stretching your back muscles is as important as stretching your arms to reach for your wallet, or to clasp your bra. Experts advise against over-stretching or stretching the same muscle group too frequently. This can damage the delicate muscles. In addition, bouncing during stretching can hurt the muscles involved, so you should try to move slowly and comfortably as suggested by Litzy.

To stretch your triceps muscles, lift one arm above your head, pointing your fingers towards your shoulder blades. Hold the back of the elbow using the opposite hand. Hold this position until your shoulders and chest feel a slight stretch. Repeat the same position on the opposite side of your body. This stretch can help improve circulation in your forearms and wrists. It can also aid you with your posture. The deltoid muscle is a triangular muscle on the top of your shoulders and this stretch can help loosen it up and relieve some lower back pain, as well.