How Stretching Your Calf Muscles Can Save Your Back
Do you ever wake up feeling stiff as a board in your low back? Does it take a while to get moving after sitting for a while? You are not alone, as millions of Americans suffer with back pain every day. The good news is that a lot can be done to help your back pain. In fact, improving your leg flexibility can increase the health of your low back.
It is quite common with every day tasks for your calf and hamstring muscles to become tighter. This increases the pull on your low back when walking or moving. Therefore, a simple solution to decrease your back pain comes from daily stretching of your calf and hamstring muscles.
The fascia in your body
Your body has huge sheets of tissue called fascia, which wrap every muscle and interconnect throughout the body. Big sheets of fascia extend from the feet, up the back of your legs to your buttocks and low back. When bending forward, squatting and reaching, this tissue should elongate and stretch. However, with chronic tightness or injury, this tissue can become inflexible, causing problems.
Try this stretch to relieve back pain anytime during the day
Here is expert advice from our physical therapists, to help you relieve your low back discomfort.
Perform a calf stretch in standing:
- Stand leaning against a wall or counter top
- Put one foot forward and bend that knee
- Keep the back knee straight
- Gently lean forward keeping your back foot down
- Lean until you feel a gentle stretch and keep it there for at least 30 seconds
- Repeat 3-5 times on each side
- Don’t push aggressively into the stretch, just be gentle
- Repeat 2-3 times a day and see how your back feels
Keeping your leg muscles flexible can significantly help your back. If you have hurt your back or you wrestle with constant aches or pains, it’s time you saw your physical therapist. Give Alliant Physical Therapy a call today to talk to one of our therapists about your back problem and discuss the natural solution for long-term relief.