Eight Ways To Crack Your Back
Do you have back issues? Cramps and pains and strains from your hips to your neck can lead some people to dump tons of money into chiropractors, massages and even surgical treatment. But a lot of back pain can be eliminated with a few precautionary measures, exercise and some quick-fix home remedies.
The Tennis Ball. One of the most annoying areas to get back pain is right between your shoulder blades. It’s a place that you can’t quite crack on your own, and even with a complicated array of stretching, it’s just one of those spots that can’t be reached. That particular pain in the back comes, in most cases, from being slouched over a computer all day at work. It’s not a healthy posture, and your body seems to punish you by putting a pain in you, right in a spot that you can’t quite get. However, there is hope. If you use a regular tennis ball, you can hold it up against your back until you have it balanced between you and a wall. Rub that area with the pressure of the ball, like a cat, and you’ll find you’ll be able to crack it.
The Noodle. Another way to get rid of back aches and pains is to use a noodle. You’ll see these things floating in pools, but also in gyms. Personal trainers use noodles to get knots out of legs, but they are great for the back as well. Noodles are basically long flat cylinders of foam, hence the name: “noodle.” Simply lay on your back and slide a noodle underneath yourself (a folded up towel works wonders as well) and roll slowly backwards and forwards. That will take the creaks right out of your spine, and massage out any knots you might have back there.
The Bearhug. Get your husband, or boyfriend or brother (or sister or girlfriend or wife if she’s strong) to grip you around the upper torso and squeeze you like a bear shaking a hive from a tree. You’ll hear the cracks, but sometimes that’s what it takes to get your back cooperating again.
Stretching. Sometimes this can work. If you have a few calisthentic stretches in your aresenol, you can try whatever works for different kinds of pain. A good one is laying on your back, putting one leg straight up in the air and then letting it fall to the side. You put your opposite arm straight out to the side, flat on the ground, turn your head and look the direction of your arm. Then stretch. You can pop parts of your back better that way than just touching your toes or doing a cat stretch on all fours.
Yoga. It’s pretty much continuous stretching. And an excuse to wear comfortable, form-fitting clothes. But yes, yoga really works for keeping the back limber and pain-free.
Massage. If you have an accommodating partner, a massage can be free (and fun). It might cost you one in return, however. Otherwise a pro will set you back some coin, but it will be worth it to have your back back. Get them to identify the knots and really work them out. Nothing gets a knot out quite like strong fingers
Get new shoes. A lot of back problems can be remedied with proper footwear. Too often we wear running shoes that are over 6 months old (you should get a new pair twice a year). Or stand in arch-less, uncomfortable footwear for too long during the day. This is a recipe for a bad back, especially if you are a waitress, or have a job that requires you to be on your feet all day.
A better bed. A lousy bed can be murder on your back. If you skimped out on your mattress last time, or stuck with the same bed for a little too long – treat yourself, and your back to a better mattress this time around. A good quality bed could be just what the doctor ordered.