Five Stretches to Relieve Lower Back Pain

Many of us will undoubtedly experience lower back pain at some point. The key to alleviating the discomfort is to keep active by strengthening the muscles and increasing blood flow to the affected area. The following simple stretches, combined with activities which force no pressure on the body, such as walking or swimming, help to relieve pain in the lower back.

1) Lower Back Stretch (Child’s Pose)
Kneel down gently on all fours, with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Gradually move your body backwards, until your bottom touches your heels. Hold the stretch for a couple of deep breaths before returning to the start position. Repeat between 8 and 10 times for maximum effect.

2) Knee Twist
Lie down on your back, placing a cushion underneath your head for comfort. Bend your knees, keeping them together, and rest your feet flat on the floor. Stretch out your arms to form a T shape. Slowly roll your knees to one side, making sure your shoulders remain on the ground. Hold and repeat, alternating sides each time.

3) Knees to Chest Stretch
As above, lie down with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Rest your hands just below the kneecaps and gently pull your knees towards your chest. Hold for a couple of breaths before returning your feet to the floor.

4) Back Extension (Sphinx Pose)
Lie down flat on your stomach, gently bend your elbows and rest down on your forearms. Ensure your neck is straight and not tilted upwards as you push away from the floor and arch your back, bringing the elbows underneath the shoulders. Take a few deep breaths, relax back down and repeat.

5) Pelvic Tilt
Lie on your back, placing a cushion underneath your head if necessary. Bend your knees slowly and keep your feet flat on the floor. Engage your stomach muscles, flatten your lower back and tilt your pelvis towards your feet. Continue to rock your pelvis back and forth slowly.