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What Chiropractic Patients Should Know About Stretching

stretching in parkWhen you suffer from joint or muscle pain, it is important to work on maintaining as much flexibility as possible. The more flexible you are, the less likely you will be to further injure yourself. One of the best ways to improve your flexibility is by stretching before you are active.

However, one of Austin’s best chiropractors says you need to warm up your muscles before you stretch. If you stretch first, you can actually injure yourself by pushing your joints too far. Spend a few minutes doing some light activity before you stretch. This can be as simple as a brisk walk or some basic calisthenics.

If you have been seeing a chiropractor in Austin or elsewhere, he or she may be able to recommend some stretches for you. Otherwise, you can use some of these basic techniques. There are two basic forms of stretching, static and dynamic.

Maintaining flexibility with Static Stretching and Dynamic Stretching

Static stretches involve holding a position for a certain period of time to loosen up your muscles. These tend to be what most people think of when they think about stretching. However, dynamic stretches are also important. With these, you move parts of your body to work on maintaining flexibility.

Many of the most effective stretches for back pain can be done right at home. For example, lie on your back with your knees bent. Grasp one knee in both hands and pull it up towards your chest. Hold this position for 30 seconds and then lower the knee to the starting pose. Repeat with the other knee. You can also do both knees at the same time.

A similar stretch begins in the same position as the previous one. However, instead of lifting your knee to your chest, roll both legs to one side so that your knees are as close to the floor as possible. Hold this position for 10 seconds, and then roll to the other side.

Another common stretch recommended by many chiropractors comes from yoga, where it is known as the “cat pose.” Get down on the floor on your hands and knees, with your hands underneath your shoulders. First, let your abdomen drop down towards the floor. Then, reverse this movement by arching your back. Repeat this cycle three to five times.

Dynamic Stretching

More dynamic stretches can also be good for your muscle pain. Try doing handwalks to stretch your shoulders and abdominal muscles. Stand up straight and slowly lower your hands towards the floor. Walk your hands out in front of you until you are as far down as you can go. Then walk your hands back to the starting position.

A final stretch that can help your back muscles is known as the “scorpion.” Lie face-down and stretch your arms out to the sides. First, slowly move your right foot towards your left arm. Then, move your left foot towards your right arm. Make sure to move in a slow and controlled fashion.

When you are suffering from muscle or joint pain, it is a good idea to stretch both in the morning and the evening. Incorporating these exercises into your daily routine can play a key role in maintaining flexibility and avoiding many common injuries.

If you need further instruction regarding stretches, please give us a call so that you can schedule an appointment with our Doctor of Chiropractic in Austin TX.

How our Austin Chiropractor is different

You may well have seen a chiropractor before. Some of our patients haven’t always had the best experience, or they don’t like the idea of the twisting and cracking involved with regular chiropractic. Upper cervical chiropractic techniques, such as Blair or NUCCA , are a very gentle and specific way to realign the bones of the spine and relieve pressure on spinal nerves. Our Blair chiropractor in Austin says it’s a very different approach to what most people think of, when they think of ‘chiropractic’!

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