Posted by: Pamela Kalivas | May 24, 2016

Go Toe to Toe with Back Pain

Can you touch your toes? Well, maybe you shouldn’t!

Getting a deep stretch in those hamstrings is something we all learn to accomplish in grade-school or sports practice after “warming” up. As it turns out, touching your toes will actually exacerbate lower back pain, especially if done with “cold” muscles.  Tight hamstrings lead to overstretched back muscles if you bend to touch your toes.

According to the Wallstreet journal, nearly 80% of people have back pain, with most cases unrelated to injury.  Sedentary jobs and lifestyles are leading to ever increasing rates of back pain.  As opposed to standing, sitting prevents the curvature of your spine from taking its natural shape.  Although using lumbar support and adjusting your workstation ergonomically may reduce back pain, standing and properly stretching are the best methods for preventing low back pain.

These exercises and techniques reduce back pain and make sitting more comfortable:Back Bend

Back Bend: Every hour or two, stand and put your hands on your hips, bend backward slightly until you feel a stretch in your lower back and pectoral muscles. Hold for three seconds and repeat five times.

  • Note: If you have spinal stenosis this stretch is not recommended. If this feels painful at any time, discontinue the stretch.


Cat Reaches to Sky



Stretch to the Sky: Raise your hands to the sky and stretch upwards, clasping your hands together for 10 seconds. Perform this stretch every one to two hours.



Child's Pose

Good morning sunrise: In bed or on a yoga mat in the morning, perform child’s pose 4 or
5 times. This involves the knees tucked on the sides of the chest while the shins rest on the surface. Your hands and arms will be stretched out in front of you. After you stretch your arms forward you may rest them at your sides.


Beat back pain and remain productive! These simple stretching techniques, when practiced daily, can make a world of difference.


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