A herniated disk can be a painful and debilitating condition. Fortunately, there are some exercises you can do that may help relieve the pain and get you back to your normal activities. Here are six safe exercises for people with a herniated disk, as well as what to avoid doing.
Stretching is an effective way to ease the pain from a herniated disk. Try gentle stretches like the cobra pose and cat-cow stretch, focusing on keeping your spine flexible and mobile. Start with shorter stretches of 10-20 seconds each and gradually increase the length of time as your flexibility improves. Avoid any stretches that cause pain or discomfort in your neck or back.
Strengthening exercises can help support your spine and reduce pressure on the disks in your neck and lower back. Focus on strengthening core muscles like your abdominals, glutes, hips, pelvic floor muscles, and lower back muscles through exercises like planks, bridges, squats, leg lifts, and bird dogs. Make sure to keep proper form throughout these exercises by avoiding arching or twisting your spine too much while exercising.
Low impact cardiovascular activities like walking or swimming are great ways to build up strength without putting excessive strain on the spine or aggravating a herniated disk further. Start slowly with low-impact activities such as light jogging or walking at an easy pace for short periods of time before gradually increasing both the duration and intensity of these activities over time.
Yoga is another great exercise for people with a herniated disk because it helps build strength while also stretching out tight muscles in the body that can cause pain if left untreated for too long. Be sure to practice poses that focus more on stretching than strengthening - such as downward facing dog - so you don’t overexert yourself, but still get the benefits from yoga practice at home or in group classes geared towards relieving chronic pain from herniated disks.
Foam rolling is similar to massage therapy in that it helps alleviate tension in soft tissue areas around the spine which can reduce inflammation caused by intense activities like running or lifting weights. Use slow, controlled movements when foam rolling, focusing more on areas around your neck, shoulders, low back, glutes, hamstrings, calves, shins, feet, etc.. Avoid foam rolling if it causes any sharp pains during movement.
If you have access to a pool or hot tub near you, water therapy is an excellent way to gently exercise without exerting too much pressure on your spine while still building strength throughout various muscle groups. Swimming laps or simply floating around in shallow waters can help relieve tension from those hard-to-reach areas around the spinal column while also providing mental relaxation benefits from being submerged in warm water.
Taking care of yourself when living with a herniated disk is essential for managing pain levels in order for you to return to daily life activities quickly and safely. With proper preparation and guidance from physical therapists at B Physical Therapy (Oviedo), you should be able to find relief from painful symptoms associated with this condition through simple stretching routines, core strengthening exercises, low impact cardio workouts, yoga poses tailored towards treating chronic pains resulting from herniation issues, foam rolling techniques targeting stress points throughout the body (especially around joints), as well as beneficial water therapies designed specifically for individuals living with this condition. By taking advantage of all available treatments offered at B Physical Therapy (Oviedo) – including therapeutic massage services – you should be able set realistic goals towards achieving better health outcomes over time! Schedule an appointment today!