Day-to-day everyone (or most of us!) comment at some point about a sore lower back, a back stiffness or a hip stiffness, or just being generally stiff! We need to regularly stretch our body and constantly change these positions. If you spend all day sitting, or even just in one similar position for too long your muscles will tighten and adopt to this position. Prolonged use of this will eventually give pain and stiffness. Plus- stretching generally makes us feel good!
Here are 6 stretches to try to relieve lower back and hip tightness and help promote a healthy back!
1. Lunge stretch. This is always a favourite of mine! This stretch really opens the back hip to give a good stretch. By leaning your body slightly backwards by arching the back and drawing the arms back you will deepen the stretch. Keep the arms strong and long to challenge strength and stamina.
2. Seated gluteal stretch. Crossing one leg over the other and really draw this knee up to your opposite arm pit, allowing the buttock to come off of the floor.
3. Swan stretch. This is a fantastic stretch for the gluteals, but also the lower back. Lying flat over the front leg and just letting your body relax into the stretch makes this a really lovely relaxing pose.
4. Hip twist stretch. By bringing your knees over to one side and turning your head to the opposite side, this stretch gives the spine a great stretch. Hold it here and gently let the knees relax further, allowing the spine to twist further. Then try the opposite side too.
5. Childs pose. This is just such a calming position to lie in. Stretching the arms out in front of you to lengthen the shoulders and upper back, whilst keeping your bottom on the heels to lengthen the lower back. Just lie here. Relax. Breathe.
6. Mermaid stretch in sitting. Sit with your legs in a “Z” shape as per the photo and lengthen one arm up and over to really stretch out the waist. Reach up and long through the arm for the waist/obliques and lower back. Press the knees into the floor to target the gluteals and the surrounding hip muscles at the same time.
* Stretch- Loosen- Relieve-Relax- Prevent *