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Doing exercises for back is good. But how to do it right and avoid injury? In this article, BestLifeTips will share with you all about arching your back. Keep reading to see how to do it right.
Is arching your back good for you?
Arching your back is good or bad? It depends on the method you apply and your back condition.
If you arch your back in the right way while doing yoga, it can help you get great physical and spiritual benefits.
- Back bending poses stretch the front body and strengthen the back.
- It’s good for body building.
- Improve the flexibility and mobility of the spine. In fact, arching back is essential in maintaining the spontaneity of the spine as we aged.
- Open shoulders and chest, and release tension or stiffness in shoulders and chest at the same time.
- Increase lung capacity.
- Help relieve back and lower back pain.
- Back flexing poses also stretch the front body. They increase the strength and ability of thighs.
- Stretch up the abs.
- Stimulate Heart Chakra (which relates to love, feelings, compassion…). It really helps us to open up more towards those of our emotions, experiences, and relationships.
- Release agglomerate emotions such as disappointment, fear, anger, and sadness.
- Push the limits on our body and our emotions as bending postures help us overcome anxiety and fear.
- Increase energy.
Do not over-arch your low back
If you over-arch your low back while exercising or when you have back pain, it can lead to serious consequences.
- It overloads your facet joints
There are two major areas of the low back that bear the weight of your body. The first one is through the intervertebral disc between vertebrae in your spine. The second one is a joint called facet joint that is located behind the disc. There are 2 facet joints, one on the right and one on the left.
The facet joint usually handles around 30% of the weight. But when you arch your back, more than 30% of your weight will transfer through the faced joints. That can become achy and uncomfortable over time.
- It leads to pinching in the front of the hips
The hip is a joint that is made between your thigh bone and your pelvis.
If the pelvis is pointed straight down to the ground, the thigh has a certain range of motion that it can move in before it starts to hit the rim of the pelvis. When the low back is over-arched, the pelvis is pointed more downward.
Over time when the pelvis is pointed more downward, that thigh can rub and bump into the front rim of the pelvis. This can lead to a pinchy feeling and pain in the front of the thigh or groin area.
- It can decrease power output
The lumbar spine is like the power transferrer from the lower body to the upper body in deadlift or heavy works.
Since there is a lot of force and power being transferred through it during doing those works, it shouldn’t bend. If you have an over-extended lumbar spine, you are decreasing your body’s ability to create stiffness and stability through the low back. This will lead to decreased power.
Best ways of arching your back to improve back flexibility
1. Downward Dog to Cobra Stretch
- Lying flat on a mat, place your hands in front of your hips
- Straighten your arms, keeping your hips in contact with the ground
- Look up and arch your back
Moving to the Downward Dog
- Keep your hands in the same position
- Lift your hips off the ground, as high as possible while keeping your legs straight
- Move on to your toes, pushing your palms into the ground
- Move your head in between your arms, looking back at your feet
2. Supine spinal twists
- Lie down on a mat, facing to ceiling
- Place your arms directly to the side to help stabilise your body
- Bring your knees up, creating a right angle with your legs
- Slowly lower both legs to one side, keeping your back flat on the ground and head facing upwards
- Relax the legs to the side, before slowly lifting back to the middle and repeating on the other side
3. Jefferson Curl
- Bend your knees and keep a straight back when picking up your weight
- Place your feet shoulder-width apart, holding the weight with both hands
- Relax your arms, and curl your back over as if you were trying to touch your toes
- Keep your legs and arms straight during the entire stretch
- Relax at the bottom of the movement, and exhale, embracing the stretch
- Hold for a few seconds before slowly returning to the top, and repeating
4. Kneeling thoracic twists
- Start by kneeling down on one knee
- Place both palms flat on the ground in line with your front foot
- Rotate your torso, lifting your arm up and over your front leg
- Twist until your shoulder, elbow and hand are inline pointing towards the ceiling.
- Keep your neck and head neutral throughout the movement, following the torso naturally
- Slowly return to the start
- Repeat on the other side
5. Cat-cow pose
- Start kneeling down with your knees below your hips, and hands below your shoulders
- Form the ‘tabletop’ position, with a flat and straight back and neutral neck position
- Lower into the cow pose, exhaling and pushing your stomach down, arching your back while keeping your shoulders and hips in the same position
- Move back through the ‘tabletop’ position, inhaling and pushing the spine up, arching into the Cat Pose.
- Maintain a steady flow throughout the Cat-Cow pose
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This is all about arching your back that BestLifeTips presents to you. If you have any question or suggestion, leave comment below. Come back to us for more useful information.