Businesswoman Stretching At Desk

From Sharp Health News, a publication of Sharp HealthCare

A healthy back keeps you doing the things you love, such as playing with your children or grandchildren, climbing a trail, traveling or walking long distances. Without a healthy back, your life becomes limited. Try these two simple stretches to help prevent and alleviate back pain:

Overhead arm and body stretch

  • Sit your bottom more in the middle to front of a chair or stand to begin.
  • Raise your arms over your head, with your palms facing forward.
  • Breathe five to 10 deep breaths. Your arms do not need to be fully straight.
  • Lower your arms and repeat if desired.

Alternate side body stretch

  • Stand about a foot away from the wall.
  • Raise one hand and arm up on the wall and the other hand flat directly at shoulder level on the wall.
  • Then reach as high as you can with the hand on the wall above your head and breathe in three to five deep breaths.
  • Lower the raised arm and repeat with the other arm.

Stretching the back reduces tension in muscles supporting the spine, which can worsen pain from any number of back pain conditions. It also improves range of motion and overall mobility, reducing the risk of disability caused by back pain.

The VEBA Resource Center offers Full Body Stretch classes. With so much extra sitting and stress these days, taking a timeout for a full-body stretch session is more important than ever. Join the VRC team for a class that will leave you feeling relaxed, restored and maybe even standing up a bit straighter! Check out our calendar to sign up for an upcoming class.