Arched Back: Exercises to Improve Spine Alignment

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Louise Hay
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Introduction

No person has a perfectly straight back. The spine, in fact, is slightly curved inwards in the cervical area (neck) and in the lumbar area (lower back). However, in some cases the natural curvatures of the spine are accentuated, the chest and stomach can be pushed too far forward and the buttocks out. This is not an ideal situation. There arched backIn fact, it can cause pain and balance problems and instability. But there are some exercises that can improve the situation. Be careful, though: before you run them, it's important contact your doctor to investigate better and understand which is the best way to follow in your specific case.



When it comes to arched backs

Normally, the spine is aligned with the head and limbs. Ideally, there should be a straight line from the center of the head down to the center of the heels. Good spinal alignment allows the person to stand upright, move flexibly and not be subject to pain.
In reverse, an arched back can misalign the whole body and cause pain or balance problems. If incorrect postures are adopted, the dorsal arch can become accentuated: in medical terms, this condition is called hyperlordosis and sometimes simply lordosis.



 

Deliberately arching your back for extended periods of time is not a good idea. In the long run, in fact, they can take over muscle loss and pain, not only to the back muscles but also to the legs. Briefly arching the back, for example during some yoga positions, on the other hand, will not have negative consequences. Indeed, to improve back pain, practicing Yoga can be very suitable.

Some weightlifters deliberately arch their backs while performing a barbell squat. According to studies, however, it is better to keep the back neutral during squats, in a natural and slightly curved position, so as not to exert compression on the spine.

Arched back, the causes

Here are the main causes of arched backs:

  • injuries;
  • surgical interventions;
  • diseases such as rickets or osteoporosis;
  • neuromuscular diseases, such as cerebral palsy;
  • sedentary lifestyle;
  • lack of exercise.

The recommended exercises

Those who arch the spine excessively and have back pain should consult their doctor to determine the cause and establish the most suitable treatment. In most cases, however, ad hoc exercises can be performed to improve an arched back. Here are some very effective ones. The ideal would be to do them at least three to four times a week, even better would be to repeat them every day. 



Knee to chest

Lie on your back on the floor or bed, keeping in a neutral position.
Bend one leg at the knee, bringing the knee to the chest with the hands; press and hold for 15 seconds.
Return the leg to the ground and repeat with the other leg.
Do three to five repetitions with each leg.


If you can't get your knee to your chest easily, get it as high as you can.

Both knees to chest

Lie on your back on the floor or bed, keeping in a neutral position.
Place your hands behind your knees and slowly bring your knees to your chest until you feel a stretch.
Maintain the position for 20 seconds.
Do three repetitions.

 

This exercise can also be helpful for sciatica in pregnancy. 

Pelvic bridge

Lie on your back with your knees bent 90 degrees, feet flat on the floor and arms to the sides.
Slightly squeezing your gluteal muscles, lift your hips off the floor. Keep the pelvis neutral, not tilted.
Maintain the position for five seconds.
Do five repetitions.



Crossed leg stretch

Lie on your back with your arms extended to the side.
Bend your knees and cross one leg over the other.
Rotate your legs to the side of your upper leg until you feel a stretch.
Turn your head to the opposite side.
Keep stretching for 20 seconds.
Do three repetitions.

Standing pelvic tilt

Stand with your back against a wall, with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Breathe in and bend your knees slightly.
Exhale as you tilt your pelvis up, away from the wall.
Hold the position for a few seconds, relax and return to the starting position.
Do five or more repetitions.

Child's pose

Sit on your shins with your knees together, your big toes touching and your heels spread to the side.
Lean forward at your hips and place your hands in front of you.
Then lower the hips towards the feet.
If your thighs don't go all the way down, place a pillow or folded blanket under them for support.
Gently rest your forehead on the floor or turn your head to one side.
Keep your arms straight or, alternatively, rest them along your body.
Breathe deeply in the back of the rib cage and at the waist.
Relax in this position for up to five minutes while continuing to breathe deeply.

 

You can also try the bear plank, which trains the core intensely. 

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