Scoliosis is a debilitating spine condition. It is often seen in childhood, but it can also appear in adulthood. An increasing number of adults are suffering from the condition for a variety of reasons, including prolonged, uneven pelvic position at work, knee or foot distortions, and even injuries to the spine and head.
When scoliosis starts rearing its ugly head, patients can actually alleviate the pain through scoliosis-specific exercises. Such physical activities can help provide relief by releasing tension in the muscles that control the spine. They also help increase blood circulation in the area, as well as improve lubrication in the joints. Below are four exercises for scoliosis that you can perform at home or in the gym to help you manage the pain, as recommended by Ridgewood, NJ back pain experts.
Stretches to Re-Train Muscles
There are two ways to restore some of the imbalance brought about by scoliosis. One is to stretch the body further in the direction of the bend. This can cause the stretched muscle to pull back and shorten. Stretching the stretched muscles further brings them to a shortened state, which can balance the bend. The second approach, albeit less effective, is to bend the spine opposite of the bend. This can prevent the ‘rubber band effect’ and help muscles that have gone lax to regain their elasticity.
Step Down with One Arm Reach
When your spine is out of alignment, it also misaligns your hips and therefore makes one leg appear longer than the other. You will usually feel a little more pressure in the longer leg while standing since it’s carrying most of your body weight. To complete this exercise, start in a standing position and step on to a small stool or step, using your longer leg. Lower the other leg down to the floor and start bending on your knee. As you lower your body, raise the arm opposite to the leg you’re standing on as high up as you can. Repeat the action for five to 10 times. Do not repeat on the other side.
Right Angle Wall Stretch
Lift your palms up to face a wall at shoulder level. Place your feet directly under your hips. In this position, start pushing your palms to the wall. This movement is designed to lengthen your spine. Be sure to keep your lower back tucked in and arms straight while doing this motion.
Arm Reaching in a Split Stance
Step forward with the longer leg. Take a wide stance and keep your torso upright. Shift your weight forth and back, bending the forward knee as you shift you weight. While doing this, raise the arm opposite of the forward leg up to the sky as high as possible. Use the raised arm to reach the other arm with the palm facing outward. This yoga-inspired movement twists the torso and spine toward the side of the forward leg to relieve tension in the spine. Do not repeat on the other side.
Want to learn more exercises for scoliosis and other spine-related conditions? Get in touch with a Ridgewood, NJ back pain specialist such as those from MedWell Spine, OsteoArthritis & Neuropathy Center.
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Adult scoliosis can be reduced through specific SEAS exercises: a case report, BioMedCentral.com
Scoliosis-Specific exercises can reduce the progression of severe curves in adult idiopathic scoliosis: a long-term cohort study, NIH.gov