Tag Archives: stretch

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.

Get Back To Healthcare Basics In The New Year

Get Back To Healthcare Basics In The New Year

From the moment we wake up in the morning to the time we go to sleep, the decisions we make have a lasting impact on our comfort, health, and wellbeing. This year, aim to get back to the basics of caring for your back, spine, and overall health.

See how the 4 S’s, Stretch, Strengthen, Stabilize, and Sleep, can help you improve your health:

  • Stretch and Strengthen: Start your morning with a stretching routine to help get the blood flowing early. Add in simple exercises to begin building strength. This sets the tone for the rest of your day.
    • Get a full body stretch, increase circulation, and relax away stiffness and pain with an Inversion table. You can also perform ab exercises on an Inversion table.
    • Using a foam roller is an effective, inexpensive, and easy way to stretch while adding the health benefits of a massage.
  • Stabilize: Invest in back cushions and seating supports to ensure your back and spine are properly supported throughout the day.
  • Sleep: Quality sleep products play an important part in keeping you pain-free so you can have a restful night’s rest. Invest in products that offer back and spinal support all night.
    • An adjustable base allows you to find neutral posture and spinal support while you relax or sleep.
    • A properly fitted pillow should fit your body type and sleep style for lasting support and comfort.
    • Add extra support where you need it most and reduce pressure on the spine with a Bed Wedge System.

Visit your local Relax The Back location to try out our products first-hand and feel the difference of quality support and comfort. We can help you find product solutions for your specific needs. Let’s make 2017 your healthiest year yet!

Office Stretches

Sitting for long periods of time can cause key muscles in the body to become tight and ultimately weak. Here are some tips to get moving in the office:

  • Think and work on your feet: Standing while working helps promote increased circulation, mental alertness, core strength, and relieves stress on your back and legs for a productive, pain-free workday. Our Sit-to-Stand desk quickly, quietly, and conveniently converts from a low of 26” to a high of 55” for flexibility in work habits.
  • Take stretch breaks: Take hourly stretch breaks, focusing on leg and feet stretches right at your desk. Try standing on tiptoe or on one leg, and do small lounges to work the calf muscles and knees.
  • Walk the talk: Instead of emailing a coworker who’s nearby, walk to his or her desk to discuss in-person or suggest a mobile meeting where you walk and talk.
  • Climb: Ditch the elevator, and take the stairs wherever possible. Stair climbing is a vigorous activity that counteracts the slowdown of metabolic activity that happens when seated.

In addition to these activities, try these great stretches to counteract the effects of prolonged sitting. Jeremy Shore from Livestrong.com shows you a few easy and effective office stretching techniques.

5 New Year’s Resolutions for a Healthier Spine

If 2012 was marred by back and neck pain, add these 5 resolutions to your list. Remember, your spine connects many nerves, muscles and ligaments throughout the body, making spinal health key to your overall health.

1. Resolve to cherish sleep
While sleeping, your spine finally has an opportunity to relax and repair itself. Try sleeping in a neutral position on your back or on the side to avoid forcing any extra curves into your back. Make sure you have a supportive pillow and mattress to properly and comfortably sleep in a neutral position. This way, your body can take full advantage of restorative sleep and more easily be able to relax.

2. Resolve to stretch
Tight muscles can cause imbalances in bodily structure, increasing the risk of injury and causing pain. In particular, tight muscles around the spine cause spinal stress instead of providing adequate spinal support. Also, tight hamstrings can pull the pelvis out of its normal alignment with the spine, causing back and joint pain. Consider stretching your spine via inversion therapy – effective and only takes a couple minutes.

3. Resolve to be active
Different types of exercise protect the spine in different ways. For example, abdominal exercises strengthen the core area, which support and protect the spine. Cardio helps shed extra weight that drags down on ligaments, muscles, and tendons of the lower back. Exercise helps the healing process, so for those sidelined by injury, make it a priority to stay active within your physical means.

4. Resolve to create a spine-healthy work environment
For full-time office workers, lower back pain may be a result of poor workplace ergonomics. From sitting on a chair with good back support to avoiding prolonged sitting, all systems, levels, and angles must work together for an ergonomic workstation. For more information, check out our infographic on how to design your workspace for maximum movement, flexibility, comfort, and productivity.

5. Resolve to stay hydrated
We all know water is vital, but don’t underestimate its importance to the spine. Our spinal discs can shrink over time if they don’t get enough water, resulting in less “padding” and increased likelihood of spinal ruptures or bulges. Resolve to choose water as your accompanying beverage of choice at meals, and sip liberally throughout the day.