By Cheryl Caplow
Flexibility is important for everyone, but especially for rehabilitation after a back injury.
Approximately 8 out of 10 people will experience the symptoms of back pain at least one time in their life. It used to be that bed rest was recommended after a back injury. But now, the most recommended treatments include gentle stretching and strengthening of the back muscles to enable you to resume your daily activities as soon as possible.
People who suffer from lower back pain should be encouraged to help with their own recovery by exercising and getting physical therapy, are seldom given the knowledge and tools needed to accomplish this, according to Verne Mooney, MD in his recent article “Rehabilitation and Exercise for a Healthy Back.” Of course, getting better is only the beginning, since further episodes of back pain are quite common as time passes. Whether suffering from the first bout of low back pain or following extensive treatments or even surgery, it is important for patients to avoid or minimize the severity of recurrences by rehabilitating the back.
Flexibility, the ability to move freely, is an important factor in the rehabilitation process. If you have ever strained a back muscle or pinched a nerve in your neck, you will remember how carefully and slowly you had to reinvigorate those muscles. Stretching on the Body Archer with its sturdy construction and 20 inch height, can soothe and ease muscles that are relearning their proper alignment. Back arching regularly at home after professional treatments by a physical therapist can reinforce those positive changes long after formal rehabilitation visits are over.
Maintaining flexibility can also help you avoid many diseases. As an example, being able to walk comfortably for a half hour a day helps keep oxygen flowing to your heart and your brain, keeping you alert, active, and less likely to acquire any number of ailments, from heart disease to Alzheimer’s. Stretching your muscles and mildly decompressing your spine keeps your joints supple, healthy, and able to perform daily tasks important to your life and general health.
If we don't do some serious stretching almost daily, we eventually lose muscle and joint flexibility while we're young and especially as we age. Maybe you can't comfortably bend down to pick up that pencil or lift that box without feeling it in your back...in a bad way. And that limits you.
Flexibility is an important indicator of joint health, and it's important for remaining mobile and self-sufficient at any age. Upper back and neck exercises after an injury can be especially challenging. The Body Archer is superior in aiding relaxation and flexibility of the muscles of the back and neck because it doesn’t require intense movement, physical strength or much effort at all. You just breathe, relax and let gravity do all the work.
Check out these instructional videos for how to maximize the benefits of Stretching on the Body Archer.