As one ages, the wear and tear of our body over the years starts becoming more apparent. We start feeling all the pains connected with the process of ageing. It is inevitable. What we should strive to do from our end is to develop healthy habits. With healthy habits, we can age more gracefully and delay onset of pains and aches.
Back pain is a common complaint among the elderly. One of the reasons for this is- as we age, the disk with jelly-like substance between our vertebrae begins to shrink due to vertebral disc dehydration, disc desiccation, leading to sciatic pain, paraspinal muscle spasm and disc prolapse. This may cause stiffness and pain while moving as the bones start rubbing against each other.
Here are some exercises that you can do at home to avoid back pain-
- Side Planks: In order to have a strong back, it is important to strengthen the muscles around the spine like abdominal muscles. Start by lying on one side. Tighten your abdominal muscles. The arm on top should be along your side and the arm below should hoist you, with the forearm flat on the floor and the elbow bent at right angle. Hoist your upper body and hips off the floor with only your forearm and feet on the floor. Hold the position for as long as possible and then repeat on the other side.
- Leg Raises: This is a good exercise for the lower back, hip and buttock muscles. To begin, kneel on all fours with your palms on the floor. Then, raise one of your legs off the floor and stretch it out back as far as possible. Try to raise it to the same level as that of your back. Hold the position for as long as comfortable and repeat the exercise with your other leg.
- Back Extension: This exercise stretches the mid-back and the lower-back muscles and helps maintain good posture while sitting and standing. Begin by lying down on your stomach with your palms facing down on either sides of your face. Then, slowly raise your upper body (up to your hip) and arch it backward keeping your forearms and palms still on the floor. Hold for as long as possible and then repeat the exercise.
- Hip Flexing: This will improve lower-back flexibility. Start with kneeling on all fours with your palms on the floor. Then, slowly move your hips back while your hands stretch out diagonally as a result. Come back to position and repeat this. It is essential to keep your abdomen tight and your spine straight.
Simple aerobic exercises like walking and jogging are known to reduce incidences of lower back pain. Before starting any kind of exercise it is important to do some warm-up exercises.
If you have a history of back issues or bone problems, it is advisable to consult our skilled and experienced physiotherapists and doctors at One Life, for exercises to suite your specific needs. To book a home visit, call us or visit our website.