Back Pain

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. If you have a question, just ask. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

7 Stiff Back Stretches

A stiff back can be caused by many things including arthritis, back strain, alignment issues, and general stiffness. These back stretches should help.

Some great ways to relieve a stiff back are pelvic tilts, bridges, trunk rotation, single knee to chest, and double knee to chest. All these help loosen up the pelvic and hip muscles, as well as the back extensors and trunk muscles.

A prayer stretch or child’s pose, and a cat/dog or cat/cow do a great job of stretching the whole back and hips, as well as other parts of the body.

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10 Best Scoliosis Exercises

These scoliosis exercises are for postural scoliosis that can come from bad posture or a leg length difference. If you've had scoliosis since you were young, these stretches may not help.

Scoliosis is a curvature of the spine. It can happen when you are young, or it can happen when you are older and have bad posture or a leg length difference. This can cause the muscles on one side of the back to be tight and/or the muscles on the opposite side to be too weak. These exercises are for postural scoliosis.

Starting off on the floor, you will work your core and pelvic muscles. If you can’t get on the floor, you can do them on a couch or bed.

You can also use a Swiss ball (therapy or stability ball) to help work on your balance muscles as well as your back muscles. If you don’t have a ball, you can do these lying down on your stomach. You also want to work on your side as well to strengthen your oblique muscles. Make sure to modify the exercises as you need to.

In standing, you can use weights and resistive bands. Make sure you start of with light resistance for both and slowly progress to something harder. The last exercises are squats with movements. Make sure you are using good form so you don’t irritate something else like your knees.

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10 Best Scoliosis Stretches

These scoliosis stretches are for postural scoliosis that can come from bad posture or a leg length difference. If you've had scoliosis since you were young, these stretches may not help.

Scoliosis is a curvature of the spine. It can happen when you are young, or it can happen when you are older and have bad posture or a leg length difference. This can cause the muscles on one side of the back to be tight and/or the muscles on the opposite side to be too weak. These stretches are for postural scoliosis.

Start off sitting in a chair. You can stretch just the side that is tight, or you can stretch both sides. Stretching the quadratus lumborum (QL) helps relax the muscles on the side of the spine.

You can also do an active stretch, which is moving your whole trunk and arms while rotating. This is also a great way to stretch the trunk muscles. Roll downs help get the muscles close to the spine stretched out.

The next stretches are on the floor. If you can’t get on the floor, you can do them on your couch or bed. Stretches like the cat/dog, way the tail, prayer, and side to side prayer stretch will help loosen up the muscles in the back and around the spine.

Some of the final stretches are a little more intense, so make sure you are ready to stretch that much before trying them.

Related Videos:

Scoliosis Exercises (Postural)

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Top 5 Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Exercises & Stretches

Lumbar spinal stenosis can press on the spinal cord and the nerves that travel through the spine. Symptoms include pain or cramping in the legs when standing for long periods or when walking.

Lumbar spinal stenosis often happens with age. The discomfort usually eases when bending forward or sitting down. These exercises & stretches should help relieve lumbar spinal stenosis pain.

Start off by stretching your lower back and gluteus muscles. This will help take the pressure off your spine.

Then you will go into a progress of the dead bug. This includes a pelvic tilt, and movement of the arms and legs. Make sure you master the pelvic tilt first because it’s the most important part of the exercise.

Finally, you will do a bird dog progression in quadruped. This helps strengthen the core, and it helps work on general stability.

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