Back stretches
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Back Stretches. Dr. Michael P. Gillespie. Listen To Your Body. When stretching, always listen to your body. If the stretch starts to feel too tight, ease off. If you feel pain, your body is trying to let you know that something is wrong. Ease off the stretch until it feels correct.

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Back Stretches

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Back stretches

Back Stretches

Dr. Michael P. Gillespie


Listen to your body

Listen To Your Body

  • When stretching, always listen to your body.

  • If the stretch starts to feel too tight, ease off.

  • If you feel pain, your body is trying to let you know that something is wrong.

  • Ease off the stretch until it feels correct.


Groin stretch

Groin Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Both knees bent

  • Soles of feet together

  • Hold for 30 seconds

  • Gravity does the stretch


Groin stretch rocking

Groin Stretch (Rocking)

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Gently rock your legs as one unit

  • Rock back and forth approximately 10-12 times

  • No greater than 1 inch in either direction

  • Initiate movements from the top of the hips


Low back side top of hip

Low Back, Side, & Top of Hip

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Knees together, feet resting on floor

  • Interlace fingers behind head with arms on floor

  • Lift left leg over right leg

  • Use left leg to pull right leg towards floor

  • Keep upper back, head, and shoulders flat

  • Hold 10-20 seconds


Low back side top of hip pnf

Low Back, Side, & Top of Hip (PNF)

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Hold down right leg with the left leg and simultaneously try to pull right leg back up

  • Hold contraction for 5 seconds

  • Relax and stretch


Neck stretch

Neck Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Interlace fingers behind head at ear level

  • Pull head forward until you feel a slight stretch

  • Hold for 3-5 seconds

  • Slowly return to start

  • Repeat 3-4 times


Neck stretch pnf

Neck Stretch (PNF)

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Interlace fingers behind head at ear level

  • Gently lift head and move head back towards floor while resisting

  • Hold isometric contraction for 3-4 seconds

  • Relax for 1-2 seconds

  • Stretch for 3-5 seconds

  • Repeat 2-3 times


Neck stretch crossover

Neck Stretch Crossover

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Gently pull your head and chin toward your left knee

  • Hold for 3-5 seconds

  • Relax and lower your head

  • Perform the same procedure on right side

  • Repeat 2-3 times


Neck rotation

Neck Rotation

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Back of head on floor

  • Hands resting on floor

  • Turn chin to an easy stretch

  • Jaw relaxed

  • Hold 3-5 seconds

  • Repeat on opposite side

  • Repeat 2-3 times


Shoulder blade pinch

Shoulder Blade Pinch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Interlace fingers behind your head and pull shoulder blades together to create tension in upper back

  • Your chest will move up

  • Hold 4-5 seconds

  • Relax and stretch neck

  • Repeat 3-4 times


Low back flattener

Low Back Flattener

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Tighten gluteus and abdominals

  • Flatten lower back

  • Hold for 5-8 seconds

  • Relax

  • Repeat 2-3 times

  • Maintain constant contraction


Shoulder blade pinch gluteus contraction

Shoulder Blade Pinch & Gluteus Contraction

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Simultaneously perform shoulder blade pinch, low back flattening, and gluteus contraction

  • Hold for 5 seconds

  • Relax and stretch neck

  • Repeat 3-4 times


Back of arm stretch

Back of Arm Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Put one arm above your head (palm up)

  • Put the other arm along your side (palm down)

  • Reach in opposite directions

  • Hold stretch for 6-8 seconds

  • Reverse

  • Repeat at least 2 times


Elongation stretch

Elongation Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Extend arms overhead and straighten out legs

  • Reach as far as you comfortably can

  • Stretch for 5 seconds

  • relax


Elongation stretch diagonal

Elongation Stretch (Diagonal)

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Stretch diagonally

  • Point toes of left foot as you extend your right arm

  • Hold for 5 seconds then relax

  • Repeat on opposite side


Elongation stretch with abdominal hollowing

Elongation Stretch With Abdominal Hollowing

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Pull in with the abdominal muscles as you stretch

  • Perform the elongation stretches 3 times


Knee to chest stretch

Knee To Chest Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Pull your right leg to your chest with your hands behind your knee

  • Hold for 10-30 seconds

  • Repeat opposite side

  • Keep low back flat

  • If possible, keep head on mat


Knee to chest with crossover

Knee To Chest With Crossover

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Pull your knee to your chest, then pull your knee across the body to the opposite shoulder

  • Hold for 10-20 seconds

  • Repeat opposite side


Knee to chest outward

Knee To Chest (Outward)

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Pull your right knee to the outside of your right shoulder

  • Hands behind leg, just above knee

  • Hold for 10-20 seconds

  • Repeat opposite


Knee to chest b l

Knee To Chest B/L

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • After completing the unilateral stretch, pull both legs to your chest

  • Initially keep your head down, then curl up towards your knees


Inner thigh stretch

Inner Thigh Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Laying on back with knees flexed toward your chest

  • Place hands on legs just below knees

  • Slowly pull your legs out and down until you feel a mild stretch

  • Hold for 10 seconds


Low back side of hip stretch

Low Back & Side of Hip Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Put your right hand behind your left knee (leg bent at 90¬į) and pull bent leg over other leg

  • Turn your head to look over your left hand (arm straight out)

  • Pull down gently with right hand

  • Hold for 15-20 seconds b/l


Low back side of hip stretch1

Low Back & Side of Hip Stretch

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • To increase the stretch in the gluteus, reach under your right leg and behind the knee

  • Slowly pull your right knee to your opposite shoulder

  • Hold for 15-20 seconds b/l

  • Keep shoulders flat


Back extension

Back Extension

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Lying prone, place your elbows beneath your shoulders

  • Mild tension should be felt in the mid to low back

  • Keep front of hips on floor

  • Hold 5-10 seconds

  • Repeat 2-3 times


Side lying

Side Lying

  • Relax

  • Breathe

  • Lie on your side with your legs curled up and your head resting in your hands.


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