Get ready to RELAX into this gentle back stretch.
Pull the stability ball up against the front of your thighs before allowing your spine to flex forward, laying your torso completely over the top of the ball. If your back is noticeably tight, you may have trouble relaxing into this stretch and you may notice that, as you fall into more flexion, the muscles in your back will want to jump or tighten in response. Do your best to allow the muscles of your back to relax and to soften your tailbone down toward the floor. Breathing into the back of your ribcage rather than the front of your chest or abdomen will assist with this.
Many of our clients with back pain find that it takes a few minutes in this stretch for their back muscles to “decompress” and relax, and you may experience some discomfort, as is common with stretching any tight muscle or muscle group, as gravity pulls you into a deeper stretch over the ball.
If your low back is what’s tightest, you may want to try and extend your knees to straight which will push your head closer to the floor and place your low back more on the top of the ball for more of a low back stretch.
Want more relaxing stretches? Schedule your free 90 minute consultation.
Addie Kelzer is a certified personal trainer and nutrition consultant. She believes that by making fitness and good food practical, her clients will hold the power to positively change their health and the health of those closest to them.