All posts by Relax The Back

Healthy Spine, Healthy Life

Spinal health is vital when it comes to our overall health and wellness. Our spine connects numerous ligaments, muscles, and nerves throughout our entire body. It allows us to bend, twist and move around freely. From wiggling our fingers, to turning our head, to shaking our hips, every movement we take comes from our spine. It protects our nervous system, sending and receiving signals down our spine to areas that feel sensation. Our spine provides us with independence to move around and go about our day-to-day lives.

Suffering from a spinal injury or back pain can be debilitating. By following preventative measures now, we can keep our spine happy and healthy as we age. These simple guidelines will help you maintain a healthy spine so you can feel your best and live well.

  • Practice proper posture. Be mindful of your posture at all times. Whether you are sitting on the couch, in your car, or you are at the office, it is important your spine is always properly aligned. Poor posture can lead to chronic neck and back pain, headaches, or muscle fatigue. Back cushions and ergonomic seat cushions can provide the extra support you need wherever you are.
  • Exercise without overdoing it. A regular exercise routine will keep your muscles strong and flexible, improve circulation, and keep excess weight gain at bay. However, it is important to listen to your body. Repetitive movements and overexertion can cause sprains and muscle strains.
  • Consider investing in a new mattress or pillow. A quality mattress and pillow will protect and support your spine throughout the night.
  • Evaluate your sleep position. Your preferred sleep position may be causing more harm than good. Take a look at how these sleep positions can provide lasting comfort and relief.
  • Avoid lifting objects heavier than 25% of your own body weight. Ask for help when possible or use tools that can assist in lifting heavy objects to avoid straining back muscles.
  • Create a spine-friendly, ergonomic workstation. Invest in products that promote movement such as standing desks and rocking footrests. Ergonomic office chairs with Core-Flex technology strengthen the spine while promoting constant, natural motion when seated.
  • Strengthen core muscles. Incorporate targeted exercises such as aerobics, core work, and stretching into your exercise routine. A strong core will support your spine while taking pressure off of your lower back.
  • Make time to relax. Take a warm bath, sink into a massage chair, or use a handheld massager to loosen tight muscles in your neck, back, or entire body.

Visit your local Relax The Back store for more information on how you can improve your spinal health. Our trained associates will work with you one-on-one to find a product or solution that works best for your specific needs.

Sleep Well: 5 Tips For Buying New Pillows

A pillow is more than just a place to rest your head. It is vital to your best night’s sleep. Using a pillow that fully supports your head, neck, and shoulders allows you to rest comfortably throughout the night.

When did you replace your pillows last? The National Sleep Foundation recommends replacing your pillows every two years. Though, the best way to know if it is time to replace your pillows is to evaluate your sleep quality and comfort levels when you wake up. If you are feeling stiff and your body is no longer being supported or you are unable to stay in a neutral position, your sleep setting needs an upgrade.

If it is time for you to replace your pillows, use this as a guide to help you find the right one for you.

  • Consider your preferred sleep position: It’s important to maintain our neck’s natural curve. Different pillows provide different support based on your sleeping style. Back sleepers should look for a medium support pillow such as the TEMPUR-Neck Pillow. If you prefer to sleep on your side, a pillow that is high with firm support will help you maintain proper spinal alignment throughout the night. Try our ContourSide Pillow by Relax The Back.
  • Determine a budget: Once you have established a budget you are comfortable with, speak with our sales associates to see the selection of pillows we offer that fit into your budget and match your sleeping style.
  • Utilize our sleep experts: We understand no two bodies are the same. Our trained associates can help you find a pillow that supports your head, neck, and spine for lasting comfort. Determine the best size and firmness that is perfect for you by testing out pillows in one of our stores.
  • Personalized support and comfort: Pillows are not one size fits all. From preferred sleep positions, to the type of mattress you sleep on, to your body type, there are many factors that determine the best pillow for your specific needs. The key to a better night’s sleep is finding a pillow that correctly aligns the head and spine for maximum comfort and pressure relief.
  • Test it out and give it time: When you visit one of our stores, you have the ability to try numerous pillows. Lay on a pillow for at least 10 minutes and gauge your comfort levels. Does your neck feel supported? Do you feel your neck bending forward or to one side? It is important to get fitted for a pillow that allows your head, neck, and shoulders to be aligned. Once you are home, it may take a few days to adjust to sleeping on a new surface. Give your body time.

Finding the perfect pillow for your body type and sleep type is essential for your overall health and well-being. It’s amazing what a quality pillow and better night’s rest can do for your mind and body. Wake up feeling revitalized, refreshed, and ready to start your day.

Visit your local Relax The Back location to find your perfect fit today.

6 Ways Massage Therapy Improves Health And Happiness

If you have ever gotten a massage before, then you are familiar with the post-massage feelings of satisfaction, clear mind, and relaxed body. While these are great benefits of massage therapy, there are many more that go well beyond relaxation.

Getting regular massages can be life altering. Studies continue to show that maintaining a regular massage routine can have a tremendously positive impact on your overall health and wellness.

Be your best physically, mentally, and emotionally with these benefits:

  • Better Sleep: It’s no secret that getting enough sleep is vital to your overall health and wellness. Massage therapy is extremely helpful in improving your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep by reducing pain and stress hormones.
  • Increase range of motion and flexibility: Massage therapy works on connective tissues, ligaments, muscles, and joints to keep your joints more fluid while reducing risk of injury.
  • Relieve headaches: Do you suffer from chronic headaches and migraines? Massage can help ease the pressure and pain of headaches while reducing the frequency and chance of getting one.
  • Promote relaxation: Reduce anxiety and stress through decreased levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, while feel-good hormones, serotonin and dopamine, are increased.
  • Improve circulation: With regular massage, oxygen and nutrients are kneaded through soft tissues and vital organs, thus improving your circulation.
  • Relieve pain: Massage therapy can also be just as or more effective than medication and acupuncture treatments. By relaxing tense muscles, our massage products can alleviate back, neck, and all-around muscle pain.

Now, imagine coming home to your own personal masseuse. We understand it can be difficult to find time to visit a massage therapist. Having a massage chair in your home allows you to indulge whenever you want. From Swedish to Shiatsu to traditional style massages, you can have personalized comfort and relaxation when you need it most. All it takes is a few minutes a day to feel the immense benefits. Quiet your mind. Soothe your body. Feel blissful comfort in your own home.

While the reasons for getting a massage can vary from medical reasons, to relaxation, to a special indulgence while on vacation, incorporating regular massages into your health regimen has a positive impact on your health and wellbeing.

Visit your local Relax The Back location to test out our massage chairs first hand. We will help you find the perfect chair to meet your specific needs. Ask our associates about our 48-month financing options on select massage chairs.

5 Ways To Relax After Work

Life is all about balance. Think about your current routine when you get home from work. How often do you come home, sit down in your favorite chair, turn on the TV, and spend the rest of your evening there? Do you have difficulty turning off work mode, continuing to answer emails and finishing projects after you’ve left the office? While we understand there are days where you need to finish work, or you want to catch up on TV shows, doing so time and time again can leave you feeling burnt out and unfulfilled.

We all deserve a break from our busy lives. Create an after-work routine that makes the most of your time and one that will leave you feeling relaxed with these helpful tips.

  • Put your computer away, turn off email alerts: Possibly the most important task of all – set boundaries for work life and personal life. Do your best to leave work at work. Take a break from electronics by turning off your work email, putting away your computer, and being present with yourself or your family at home.
  • Read a book or listen to music: Instead of turning the TV on, listen to some soothing music or settle in with a book. Enjoy the peace and quiet and use this time to fully relax and unwind.
  • Prep for the next day: Make a list of tasks you would like to accomplish and items you may need the next day. This could be snacks, your workout gear, your computer charger, your lunch, etc. You’ll feel prepared for the day ahead and you’ll be able to fully relax without worrying about forgetting something.
  • Set aside time to learn something new: Get your creative juices flowing. Learn a new language with apps like Duolingo, sign up for a free class on Skillshare, cook a new meal with the help of HelloFresh or Blue Apron. You will feel more accomplished and satisfied with your time at home if you’re working on something you enjoy.
  • Make time for massage: Have some much needed “me-time” to fully decompress, release the tension and stresses of the day, and allow for uninterrupted massages. Find relief and relaxation with our wide range of massage products.

We hope these tips are useful in having more relaxing nights at home. If you’re looking for even more ways to relax at home, visit your local Relax The Back location to speak with our trained specialists. They can show you our full line of massage chairs, recliners, and massage products for ultimate relaxation at home.

7 Natural Ways To Beat The Flu and Colds

Cold and flu season is in full swing and this winter, the entire country is seeing an increased number of cases. Doctors and healthcare professionals say the flu season can last through April. Though cold winter temperatures create ideal conditions for the flu virus to thrive and replicate more quickly. Symptoms such as body aches, chills, fever, sore throats, and sneezing can last from days to weeks.

These natural remedies will help alleviate and relieve symptoms and have you feeling better sooner. If you are still feeling sick after a few weeks, make an appointment to see your doctor. As always, consult your physicians before starting any new treatments.

  • Take a hot shower: Relax achy muscles and breathe in steam to moisten nasal passages and scratchy throats.
  • Humidifier: Dry conditions cause the influenza virus to spread faster and more easily. Similar to the benefits you get from steam in a hot shower, using a humidifier can help increase the humidity in your home to help you breathe easier and reduce nasal inflammation.
  • Hydrate: Drinking a lot of fluids is more important than ever when you’re feeling under the weather. Dehydration can lead to new or worsening symptoms causing you to feel more even more sick. Staying hydrated helps control or prevent nausea, keep fevers down, and helps clear your head and chest of congestion.
  • Get enough sleep: Possibly the most important of all, getting adequate sleep is a vital cold remedy. Sleep deprivation can weaken our immune system’s ability to function at an optimal level.
  • Add an extra pillow: In addition to getting enough sleep, using a bed wedge system or an extra pillow to elevate your upper body opens up nasal passages, promoting sinus drainage down the back of your throat. This allows you to rest more comfortably throughout the night and it will help you sleep easier.
  • Drink hot beverages: Sooth a sore throat and nasal congestion with hot tea or hot water with lemon and honey. Warm herbal teas can also promote calmness and relaxation before bed to help you fall asleep easier.
  • Gargle salt water: While this won’t cure your cold, gargling warm salt water can bring temporary relief to a sore, scratchy throat. Dissolve half a teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water and gargle a few times a day to relieve pain.

If you are having difficulty sleeping comfortably, visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with our trained associates. They will work with you to find product solutions to help you rest comfortably all-night long.

Importance of Stretching + A Stretch Routine For Better Health

Stretching is an important factor when determining our overall health and wellness, yet it is often an overlooked part of our regular exercise routine. Whether you live an active life or a sedentary one, the benefits of stretching are far too important to neglect. Stretching not only helps improve joint range of motion and muscle tension relief, it can also improve your sleep. After a quick stretch routine, our bodies feel more relaxed helping us fall into a deeper sleep.

Here are a few other benefits of stretching including a great infographic of a stretch routine you can do after a workout or before bed.

  • Flexibility: Stretching helps keep our body and muscles flexible, aligned and in working order. Increase range of motion to ensure good posture, balance and proper movement while improving mobility and reducing stiffness.
  • Relaxation: Relieve tension to feel more relaxed. Stretching helps relax your body and your mind. You’ll be more focused and better able to manage stress.
  • Pain Prevention: By improving the flexibility of our muscles and joints, we are able to increase our range of motion and prevent injury trigger points.

Consider incorporating this routine, or one that is similar, into your regular exercise regimen. Foam rollers, Inversion Tables, and our Back Support and Stretcher are great tools to help you stretch in the comfort of your own home. For more information on how to stretch using proper technique, try our definitive book or visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with one of our trained specialists for recommendations tailored to your specific needs and abilities.

5 Resolutions To Improve Life In The New Year

With the start of the New Year, we often find ourselves reflecting on the past year and looking forward to a fresh start. While we are always advocates of New Year’s resolutions that focus on being more active, making sleep a priority, and living a healthier lifestyle, we wanted to share a few other resolutions that can help you live well and improve your life in 2018.

Add one or all of these to your list this year and be on your way to a healthier, happier 2018.

  • Get outside: Enjoy the outdoors. Studies continue to show the positive benefits of spending time outside. Go for daily walks in the morning or in the evening. Spend time by the ocean. Join a hiking group that meets on the weekends. Spending time outside can help you feel a heightened sense of well-being, relieve stress, and improve overall happiness.
  • Make yourself a priority: Whether it’s daily, weekly, or monthly, make time to check-in with yourself. Take note of how you are feeling mentally, physically, and emotionally. Go to your favorite workout class each week, try a new recipe to cook with your family, or journal before bed each night. Do more of the things that will help you feel happy and relaxed.
  • Travel more: The world is full of amazing cities and destinations to visit. Whether flying abroad or taking a road trip across country, make it a priority to travel this year, and when you do, travel pain-free using our wide selection of ergonomic neck and back supports.
  • Be present: It’s easy to get caught up with future plans, to get sucked into articles on our phones or computers, or to hold on to something in the past that doesn’t bring you joy. This year, vow to be more present in your everyday life. Let’s put away our phones, unplug daily, and be more in the moment.
  • Find what makes you happy: Instead of looking for ways to improve our lifestyle or health based on what we believe to be “the norm,” include things that truly make you happy. Go to the spa to relax or set aside some time for a much-needed massage. If you enjoy walking or hiking instead of yoga, add a weekly hike to your schedule instead of signing up for unlimited yoga classes. Set yourself up for success, rather than failure, by finding activities and nutrition plans that work best for you.

We hope you had a wonderful holiday season. Happy New Year from all of us at Relax The Back!

Live Well, Give Well: The Gift of Support

While Christmas may be behind us, these gifts of support will last all year long. When it comes to overall health and wellness, ergonomic supports can help loved ones find relief and relaxation at home, the office, or wherever they may need it. We’ve put together a list of our favorite support products to take the strain off of your spine and neck muscles to increase comfort.

Promote a healthy back and help your loved live their best life this new year with these support products.

  • Riter’s Real-EaSE Neck Support: Give the gift of deep relaxation and comfort in your neck and shoulder muscles.
  • Back Support and Stretcher: Portable spinal decompression is the gift that keeps on giving. Relieve spinal pressure while increasing flexibility and improving posture.
  • Cohen’s Heatable Acuback Kit: Help your loved ones feel their best. Find effortless upright posture while releasing tight muscles and joints.
  • Sacro-Ease Back Support: Perfect for those who spend time on the road. Properly align the pelvis and spine to sit comfortably anywhere and reduce pain.
  • Self-Inflating Back Rest: Personalized on-the-go posture support helps preserve your spine’s natural curve.
  • TravelLite Seat Cushion: A suitcase-friendly back support that provides instant relief with the turn of a valve. Ideal for travelers or those with a long commute.

Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with a trained associate who can help you find the perfect gift based on specific needs. We give our customers one-on-one support to ensure they are going home with the best product solutions for themselves or someone in their life. Visit us online at RelaxTheBack.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more holiday tips and gift guides.

Live Well, Give Well: The Gift Of A Better Work Life

Show your loved ones how much you care by helping them improve their work life with ergonomic office products.  Movement and proper support in the office leads to increased energy levels throughout the day, better productivity, greater flexibility, and reduced muscle tension and strain. Whether you wrap up a few ergonomic workstation accessories or update your loved ones desk setup with a Stand Up Desk, everyone on your list is sure to enjoy and benefit from these great products.

Give the gift of comfort and productivity with some of our favorite ergonomic office products:

  • Ultimate Executive Chair: Give ergonomic support and comfort all year long. Customize your loved one’s chair to match their personality for the perfect gift.
  • Desk Lamp: Help reduce eye fatigue, neck strain, and headaches with targeted illumination over work documents.
  • Humanscale QuickStand Adjustable Workstation: Give the gift of flexibility in the workplace. This adjustable workstation clamps to any fixed-height desk surface and allows for customized height so that friends and family can sit or stand comfortably while working.
  • Rocking Footrest: Keep feet moving for lasting relief. Improve circulation and properly align spine, to hip, to knee alignment to reduce strain.
  • Extended Reach Monitor Arm: Effortlessly adjust the monitor to the proper height for comfort all day long. Adjustable height helps to reduce upper back and neck strain.
  • AdaptDesk by Relax The Back: Freedom to move easily from sitting to standing, now that’s a gift that keeps on giving. This ergonomic standing desk rises and falls with the touch of a button to quickly transition position while working.

Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with a trained associate who can help you find the perfect gift based on specific needs. We give our customers one-on-one support to ensure they are going home with the best product solutions for themselves or someone in their life. Visit us online at RelaxTheBack.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more holiday tips and gift guides.

Live Well, Give Well: The Gift of Better Sleep

Everyone on your gift list can appreciate a great night of sleep. Help create a sleep sanctuary by gifting sleep products that will aid in quality rest and relaxation. With the right amount of sleep, we are able to lead more productive, energetic, and happier lives. Our physical, mental, and emotional health all improve when we are able to relax more, sleep better, and create healthier sleeping habits.

Wrap up a few of our favorite sleep products to help you and your loved ones sleep better all year long.

  • Snoozer Body Pillow: Ergonomic full body support is a gift everyone can enjoy. The J-shape design of this pillow promotes spinal alignment, enhanced muscular relaxation, improved circulation, and overall sleep quality.
  • PureRelax Mattress Topper: Give the gift of all night comfort with this gel-infused memory foam topper that dissipates heat away from the body while providing lasting support.
  • ContourSleep Bed Wedge System: Help your loved one find the perfect position for ultimate relaxation. Versatile wedges allow added support where it’s needed most.
  • Sleep Mask by Tempur-Pedic: Don’t let light keep you or your loved one awake. This sleep mask is perfect for sleeping on a plane, in a hotel room, or grabbing an afternoon nap.
  • Technogel Anatomic Gel Pillow : A layer of cooling gel with a memory foam design make this a cool, comfortable gift option this season. Receive a free gel travel pillow when you purchase 2 Technogel pillows ($109 value) until 12/31.
  • TEMPUR-Flex Elite: Support that moves with you? Now, that’s a gift! This mattress has a dynamically responsive feel that is both comfortable and supportive where you need it most.

Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with a trained associate who can help you find the perfect gift based on your specific needs. We give our customers one-on-one support to ensure they are going home with the best product solutions for themselves or someone in their life. Visit us online at RelaxTheBack.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more holiday tips and gift guides.

Live Well, Give Well: The Gift of Massage

The season of giving is upon us. This year, give your loved ones gifts that will help them live a better life. Massage products are the perfect gifts that will provide lasting comfort and relaxation long after the holidays have passed.

Massage therapy benefits go beyond relaxation and relief from sore muscles. Getting massages regularly is key to preventive care and maintaining overall health and wellness. With these products, your loved ones (or yourself) will improve sleep quality, feel less stressed, increase circulation, and improve flexibility and range of motion, to name a few of the benefits. Your loved ones will be able to feel like the best version of themselves; mentally, physically, and emotionally.

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Here are a few of our favorite massage products to help you live well and give well this holiday season.

  • Kneading Back Massage Cushion: Give the gift of a relaxing back massage anytime. Heated kneading massagers deliver instant back tension relief and soothing relaxation.
  • Haven Foot Massager: For the loved ones who are always on their feet. Rejuvenating rollers, kneading air massage, optional deep heat therapy, and two tension relieving-programs will give tired feet a treat.
  • Mini Pro Handheld Massager: Perfect for those on the go. Pop these in the freezer to enjoy a beneficial ice massage.
  • Theracane Max: This targeted massager eliminates knots in tense muscles. Its portable size makes it great for traveling.
  • Therapeutic Kneading Massager: Sooth muscles with infrared heat. Soft handles help you position the massager where you need it most.
  • Human Touch Novo XT Massage Chair: Relax in our Novo XT massage chair which helps you prepare for, and recover from, strenuous workouts and work days. Make sure to ask our associates about our 48-month financing options.

Treat yourself or your loved ones to something special this year. Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with a trained associate who can help you find the perfect gift based on your specific needs. We give our customers one-on-one support to ensure they are going home with the best product solutions for themselves or someone in their life. Visit us online at RelaxTheBack.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more holiday tips and gift guides.

Travel Pain-Free This Holiday Season

This holiday season has begun. With the merriment and joy surrounding this time of year, comes the, sometimes, daunting task of holiday travel. Whether you’re traveling by plane or by car, these tips will help keep you feeling fresh and energized so you can fully enjoy your time with friends and family.

  • Pack light: Bring only the necessities to minimize your chances of over-packing. Try to avoid packing everything in one large suitcase. Instead, pack two smaller suitcases. This makes it easier to lift bags in and out of the car or in and out of overhead bins.
  • Lift bags in stages: Start by lifting your bag to the seat armrest, then to the top of the seatback, and lastly up and into the bin. Do this same pattern in reverse when removing your luggage. Lifting luggage slowly and in stages helps prevent muscle strain. Ask the flight attendants for help if you feel you may struggle with your luggage. When you are lifting, never twist. This is a common cause of lower back injuries. Pivot your feet so your entire body moves in the same direction instead of only your back twisting.
  • Bring a travel pillow: By bringing your own pillow, you ensure you’ll have proper support wherever you are going. Stop in to try out our travel size pillows, such as the TEMPUR-Neck Pillow. We’ll help you find the perfect one.
  • Dress comfortably: Wear layers of non-restrictive clothes that allow you to comfortably move. Temperatures vary from airports to airplanes so layers will help keep you feeling comfortable.
  • Keep moving: Long flights or car rides have us sitting in the same position for too long. Book an aisle seat so you can easily move about the cabin when allowed. Make pit stops along the way when driving. Moving around as often as possible will avoid muscle stiffness and tension. Simple stretches and massage techniques and tools help to loosen muscle tension. Handheld massagers like Cohen’s Acuball Kit fit in carry-on luggage for quick relief.
  • Sit with support: It will not come as a surprise that airline seats do not have the best lumbar support. Use a back cushion, like the Self-Inflating Back Rest, to find proper support during your travels. Seat cushions can also provide joint pressure relief while increasing circulation during long flights or car rides.
  • Be realistic: Make plans depending on how your body and energy levels feel and remember to pace yourself. Plan the more physical parts of your trip earlier in the day with frequent breaks. Try not to overdo it in the beginning so you can enjoy your entire trip.

Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with a trained specialist who can help you prepare for your holiday travel. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more holiday tips to keep you happy and healthy this season.

Staying Healthy For The Holidays

November brings the beginning of the holiday season. It’s time for cheerfulness, gift giving, seeing friends and family, and taking time off work to travel. However, this time of year can also bring a lot of stress. Did you know the average American spends one standard work-week a year on holiday activities alone? That’s roughly 42 hours a year spent on shopping, traveling, wrapping gifts, returning gifts, going to holiday parties, and prepping for holiday parties.

Staying healthy during the holidays can be done. While the stress and demand of the holidays can take a toll on your body, there are ways to maintain a positive physical, mental, and emotional state. This year, enjoy the holidays and keep stress at bay with these helpful tips.

  • Get enough rest: Inadequate sleep can leave you feeling irritable, weaken your immune system, and worsen the feeling of pain. Treat yourself to an early gift and ensure you’re getting the best night’s rest with these sleep products.
  • Careful when carrying heavy bags: Lift luggage and heavy shopping bags in stages. Be sure to never twist when lifting heavy bags. Pivot your feet so your entire body moves together, in one direction, instead of only twisting your back. See other ways to stay pain free when traveling this holiday.
  • Stay hydrated: Dehydration can be a serious problem, especially around the holidays. When the temperature drops, we may feel that we do not need water as much but that is quite the opposite. Aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces each day. For instance, if you weigh 150 lbs., try to drink 75 oz. of water.
  • Plan ahead: Whether you’re heading to the mall, doing your shopping online, or making dinner for friends and family, make a list to save you time and energy. Lists will help keep you organized while avoiding unnecessary time on your feet spent aimlessly walking around.
  • Don’t abandon your daily routine: It’s important to both your physical and mental wellbeing to stick with your daily habits. Continue your workout schedule, meal planning, and so on. Make these habits work with your holiday schedule, not against it.
  • Set aside time for yourself: This means being okay with saying “no” to events and plans that we know will cause more stress than cheerfulness. Use this time to take your favorite workout class, soak in a warm bath, get a massage. Add one of our many massage products to your gift list, or treat yourself early, so you can relax at home and feel the benefits of massage whenever you need it.

We hope these tips help you have a stress-free and pain-free holiday season with friends and family. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter or visit your local Relax The Back store for more holiday gift ideas.

Winter Chores: 5 Tips To Prevent Pain This Season

As the temperature begins to drop, seasonal chores are beginning to show up on our to-do lists. Changing out the bed linens for warmer sheets and blankets, putting away your summer wardrobes, and clearing up the yard and gutters of leaves and, depending on where you live, shoveling snow.

 

The risk of back pain during this time of year increases due to the labor intensive work of raking leaves and clearing snow. Injuries and pain can also arise due to lack of exercise during the cooler months, slipping on wet surfaces, or bending and twisting while cleaning up outside.

Fortunately, there are different ways to combat the cooler weather. By implementing the following tips, we can help keep our body healthy while avoiding pain.

  • Dress the part: Wear layers to keep warm when going outside. Also, be sure to wear proper footwear when there is snow or water on the ground to avoid falls.
  • Move around: We tend to spend more time sitting during the fall and winter months. If you’re watching TV, make an effort to get up and move around, or try some stretching during commercial breaks. By moving throughout the day, even if it’s just around the house, you can keep muscles flexible to avoid tension and pain.
  • Eat healthy & stay hydrated: While we are in favor of indulging every now and then, by eating in moderation we can help keep extra holiday weight away. Back and knee pain are often a result of weight gain as it puts added stress on our joints and muscles.
  • Maintain a workout routine: Staying active will keep muscles strong. Core exercises work muscles that support the spine, keeping back pain at bay. Stretching often will help you stay limber while avoiding tense muscles. Try these simple exercises each night before bed.
  • Pay attention to form: Whether shoveling snow or raking leaves, keep your legs slightly bent, reaching with your arms instead of your back. Use your legs as the source of power to prevent straining your back muscles. Switch sides every 20 minutes to avoid muscle fatigue.

These tips can help you avoid pain and discomfort during the fall and winter months. From heat therapy products to foam rollers, to massage chairs, our trained associates are ready to help you prepare for the cold months ahead. Visit your local Relax The Back store locator to try out our products first-hand.

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How Getting Regular Massages Can Improve Your Life

While massage therapy is often associated with relaxation or a special indulgence during vacation, getting regular massages can have an important role in positively impacting your health and wellbeing. Studies continue to show the positive benefits of incorporating this treatment into your health regimen to improve strephysical, emotional, and mental wellness.

Whether your reasons for massage therapy are for medical purposes, stress-related, or pain relief, massage therapy can:

  • Improve range of motion and flexibility, which helps reduce and ease back pain.
  • Stretch tight or sore muscles while enhancing exercise performance.
  • Promote relaxation to reduce stress and anxiety.
  • Ease the pressure and pain of tension headaches, reducing the frequency and chance of getting one.
  • Improve blood flow, keeping joints more fluid to improve flexibility while reducing the risk of injury by working connective tissues, muscles, ligaments, and joints.
  • Reduce stress hormones and pain to help you fall asleep and have a better night’s rest.
  • Manage and reduce chronic pain naturally to improve quality of life.

Incorporate massage into your daily routine with some of our favorite massage products:

  • Foot massagers: Relieve tension and soothe feet with rejuvenating rollers and air massage.
  • Massage Cushions: Portable, travel-size cushions provide comfort and relief wherever you are.
  • Handheld Massagers: Perfect for those on-the-go, you’ll have targeted therapy at your fingertips.
  • Massage Chairs: From shiatsu to traditional style massages, you’ll have the benefits of a full body massage in the comfort of your own home.

At Relax The Back, we understand the importance of health and wellness. When we take care of our bodies, physically and mentally, we feel better and our quality of life is improved. Even if you feel you are not in pain, finding time for massage can prevent pain and health issues in the future. Our selection of massage products makes it easy to incorporate massage into your routine. Visit your local Relax The Back store for an in-store massage experience with the help of one of our trained associates.

How to Sleep Better: 10 Tips & Tricks To A Better Night’s Rest

Sleep is a core part of everyone’s health. But are you getting enough? If you wake up feeling groggy, chances are you’re not getting quality sleep. Nearly eight in 10 Americans believe they would be more prepared for the day and would feel better if they got just one more hour of sleep.

Thankfully, there are techniques that can help you get some extra shut eye. By incorporating the tips we’ve outline below, you can create healthy sleep habits. When we are getting adequate sleep, we’re improving our cognitive function, cardiovascular health and our personal performance.

Be on your way to a better night’s rest with these tips and tricks:

  • Try aromatherapy oils: Essential oils can help calm the mind and put you in a state of relaxation. The scent of lavender is known for its sleep benefits. Spray your pillow or diffuse oils as you are getting ready for bed.
  • Stretch and exercise the neck before bed: Strengthening your neck with certain exercises can be helpful in preventing pain, so you can fall asleep easier and wake up feeling better.
  • Create the ultimate sleep environment: Make your room a sleep oasis by incorporating pieces that calm you; light colors, comfortable bedding, and quality sleep products. Think cool, dark, and quiet when putting together your space.
  • Listen to soothing music: Turn on a sleep inspired playlist that lasts 30-45 minutes. Soothing tunes will drown out noises from neighbors or the outdoors.
  • Minimize any disruptions: Cover electronic screens, use a sleep mask, or purchase heavy shades or curtains to keep distracting lights out.
  • Establish consistent sleep and wake routines: Sticking to a regular routine, even on the weekends, helps the body unwind and wake up naturally.
  • Take a warm bath or shower: Relax tense muscles and unwind before bed. Also, stepping into a cool room after a warm shower helps decrease body temperatures, which triggers a tranquil, drowsy feeling.
  • Put electronics away: Laptops, smartphones, TVs, or tablets should be powered down and put away (outside of the bedroom!) 45-60 minutes before bedtime. The bright lights of these screens triggers our brains to wake up, making it difficult to fall asleep.
  • Get up after 20 minutes: If you are still awake, tossing and turning, after 20 minutes, get out of bed and try a relaxing activity. Listen to calming music, make a cup of caffeine-free tea, or read a book.
  • Be mindful of what you eat and drink: Avoid heavy or large meals 2 to 3 hours before bedtime. Feeling full can cause discomfort and indigestion, keeping you awake. Be sure to limit alcohol and caffeine intake as well.

Visit your local Relax The Back location to speak with one of our trained specialists who can provide more ideas for improving your sleep environment. They will work with you one-on-one to you find the mattress, pillow, bed wedge, or mattress topper that fits your needs so you can sleep better and live better.

Tempur-Pedic Products For Getting a Good Night’s Rest #SleepBetterLiveBetter

At Relax The Back, we understand the importance of restorative sleep. Sleep is one of the most significant contributions to your overall health and well-being. When you receive a good night’s rest, you wake up feeling rejuvenated and refreshed on your way to living the best life possible. Making sure you are getting quality sleep depends on many factors. However, the foundation of a better night’s rest begins with your sleep products.

Quality sleep products support your body from the moment you lie down until the second you wake up. From mattresses, to adjustable bases, to pillows, having the proper support keeps your spine and muscles aligned to reduce pressure, improve circulation, and keep you comfortable all night long.

Tempur-Pedic products adapt to your exact body shape, size, and weight giving you a completely customized sleep experience. Below are a few of our favorite products that will help you be on your way to a good night’s rest.

  • TEMPUR-Neck Pillow: Perfect for back and side sleepers looking for a more therapeutic, restful sleep. Maintain the natural curve of your spine with a pillow that adequately supports your head, neck, and shoulders. Ergonomic pillows can also help prevent snoring.
  • TEMPUR-Contour Elite Mattress: For those wanting more adaptive support, the TEMPUR-Contour Collection is a firmer feeling mattress. Coupled with light contouring, this mattress relieves pressure points for less tossing and turning throughout the night.
  • Body Pillow: Improve circulation, and find full body ergonomic support and spinal alignment, allowing muscles to fully relax for a more restful sleep.
  • TEMPUR All-Purpose Pillow: Used as a neck roll, lumbar cushion, or leg spacer, this “peanut” shaped TEMPUR pillow responds to body temperature and weight to provide unmatched comfort, pressure relief, and ergonomic support wherever you are.
  • Sleep Mask: Minimize disruptions and keep out light from electronic screens or outdoor lights.
  • TEMPUR Adjustable Bases: Personalize your comfort levels while maintaining the natural curve of your lower back. Adjustable bases provide support in bed when sleeping, reading, or relaxing.

Take advantage of our Tempur-Pedic sales event going on now. Receive up to $300 in free gifts with the purchase of any Tempur-Pedic Mattress Set and apply for our 48-month finance buydown program.

Visit your local Relax The Back store to speak with our trained sleep experts who can help you test out our numerous Tempur-Pedic and quality sleep products. They will work with you one-on-one to determine the best product solutions for your specific needs. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more tips, products and giveaways that will help you sleep better and live better.

How Sleep Can Improve Your Overall Wellness #SleepBetterLiveBetter

When it comes to our overall health and wellness, sleep plays a vital role in protecting and improving our mental health, physical health, and quality of life.

Quality sleep helps improve our cognitive function, personal performance, and cardiovascular health. When life gets busy, sleep can be the first thing that is affected. We often put sleep on the back burner to get more done during the day when in fact, when we are getting adequate sleep, we perform more efficiently throughout our waking hours.

Our brains need sleep to function properly and to help us prepare for the day ahead. Studies have shown that a good night’s rest improves our learning capacity, helps heal and repair our muscles, heart and our blood vessels, while also supporting our immune system and a healthier metabolism.

When we make sleep a priority, we enhance our well-being. We can wake up in a better mood, thinking clearly, with a healthy mindset to start the day. Proper sleep, a balanced diet, and a regular workout routine help to keep us healthy while preventing pain and discomfort down the road.

Take a look at the infographic to the left for more ways sleep can improve your overall wellness.

If you are having difficulty sleeping because of pain or want to improve your sleep environment, visit your local Relax The Back location to speak with a trained consultant who can help you try our numerous sleep products to create the ultimate sleep environment in your home. With the proper support, you’ll be on your way to a better night’s rest.

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National Spinal Health Month: Tips for a Healthy Spine

During the month of October, organizations across the United States focus on the importance of spinal health, different approaches to pain treatment, and how massage therapy can improve our lives.

The America Physical Therapy Association (APTA) raises awareness about the benefits of physical therapy as a safe, effective option for long-term pain management while recognizing and celebrating physical therapists and physical therapist assistants who help improve people’s lives through movement. While the American Chiropractic Associate (ACA) shares back injury preventing and strengthening tips during National Chiropractic Health Month. The end of the month turns to massage during National Massage Therapy Awareness Week (NMTAW) put on by the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA). Massage therapy can be a beneficial part of a pain management plan.

These initiatives put a spotlight on the importance, as well as the benefits, of self-care and those who help provide solutions for lasting relief. By working to improve strength, flexibility, and range of motion, we can keep our spine happy and healthy as we age. Doing so allows us to live the life we want to, free from back and neck pain.

These simple guidelines and tips can help you take better care of your spinal health:

Massage Therapy

  • Increase blood flow, endorphins, and flexibility with regular massages
  • Speed up healing, relieve tense muscles from head to toe, and find comfort, spinal support, and deep relaxation.
  • Massage chairshandheld massagers, and massage cushions allow for a therapeutic experience any time of the day, for any amount of time, in the privacy of your home.

Proper Ergonomics

  • Create a custom workstation to fit your needs and your body.
  • Look for spine-friendly office equipment. A standing deskergonomic office chair, or footrest create a healthy work environment.
  • Flexibility is key. Be sure to alternate between sitting and standing throughout the day.

Stay Active

  • Maintain a consistent exercise routine to help strengthen muscles, protect your spine, and prevent injuries.
  • Feel more energized and productive throughout the day when you get in your workout first thing in the morning.
  • Incorporate stretching into your daily regimen for increased flexibility in spinal muscles, tension relief, and increase blood flow.

Sleep Well

  • Create a sleep environment that promotes comfort, relaxation, and support.
  • A quality mattress and pillow ensures you’re getting a restful sleep by providing you with support where you need it most.
  • Improve your mood, personal performance, and cardiovascular health when you get adequate sleep.

6 Tips To Sleep Easy And Beat Insomnia 

It’s no secret our bodies need sleep. We perform better at work, we are in better moods, and overall we feel better when we’ve had enough shut-eye. Unfortunately, many of us do not get adequate sleep. In fact, roughly 40 million people suffer from insomnia annually.

If you suffer from insomnia, these tips can help you fall asleep easier and stay asleep.

  • Wind down: Our bodies need time to relax and wind down after the day’s stressors. Take some time to yourself to enjoy a warm bath, reading, or light exercises, such as yoga.
  • Relax your entire body: Meditation is a great tool to help you fall asleep. Imagine releasing tension from each part of your body. While taking deep breathes, start at your feet, then each leg, your torso, each arm, and lastly your head, neck and shoulders. By concentrating on specific parts of your body and working with your breathing, you can relieve stress and sink into a deeper relaxation to help ease you into a restful night’s sleep.
  • Listen to soothing music: Turn on a sleep inspired playlist that last 30-45 minutes. Soothing tunes will drown out noises from neighbors or the outdoors.
  • Create the ideal sleep environment: Noise, temperature and lighting play a big role in how well you sleep at night. Cool, dark, and quiet provides the best sleep environment. Keep your room between 65-72°F. If you are a warm sleeper, avoid heavy sleepwear. Invest in pillows and mattresses that offer cooling gels and materials to keep your body temperature down throughout the night. The  PureRelax Zoned Gel Topper, Technogel Anatomic Pillow  and the TEMPUR-Pedic Breeze collection provide support and cooling relief all night long.
  • Look away from the clock: Checking the time when you’re having difficulty sleeping only makes matters worse. Face your clock away from you to avoid temptations of calculating the amount of sleep you can get if you fall asleep at that moment. This can cause more anxiety, keeping you up even longer.
  • Get out of bed: After 20 minutes if you haven’t been able to fall asleep, get up and leave the bedroom. Make a cup of tea, read a book, or listen to relaxing music. Do anything that doesn’t require a lot of concentration or effort. Once you begin to get drowsy, go back to bed.

Visit a Relax The Back location near you to speak with our trained sleep experts who can help you create the ultimate bedroom sanctuary so you can get your best night’s sleep. From fitting you for a perfect pillow, to showing you different mattress styles, to offering tips and information on ways you can sleep easier, our specialists are there to provide one-on-one support. Be sure to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest for more sleep tips.