We aren’t going to bog you down with more January resolutions. We are sure you have enough to worry about. So here’s what we are going to challenge you with for 2024: take a few breaks every day, stretch your neck, shoulders, back, and legs, and feel the stress relief. Easy, right?

Stretching is a crucial component to chiropractic care and we’ll tell you why and how to get started.

Why Stretching Matters

Dr. Kevin P. Lewis takes care of many, many athletes at Greenville Spine Institute. These include former athletes, casual joggers, hikers, teenage track stars, and everyone in between who likes to get moving. Stretching can be a bore for people who love to move. Yet it is incredibly important to incorporate into daily routines, whether you’re an athlete or not.

Stretching not only feels great when done correctly but it also promotes wellness throughout your entire body and aids in the work being done during your regular chiropractic appointments.

Stretching and Aging

Did you know that muscles tighten with age? This is often due to normal changes in the nervous system and muscle tissue. Muscles often become weaker as one ages. This can inhibit range of motion, reduce flexibility and lead to stiffness in the joints making some activities more difficult.

There is good news, though. Studies suggest that regular exercise in addition to resistance training are excellent ways to retain muscle strength. And stretching has also been proven to aid in flexibility and strength as the years pass by, which helps blood flow and circulation.

When you see Dr. Lewis at Greenville Spine, you’ll be given a set of stretching exercises to complete regularly. These are an important aspect of your care and if not regularly, you’ll see a marked difference in your flexibility. In combination with adjustments, patients find their injuries heal faster, adjustments stay in place longer, and pain is reduced.

Specific Stretches

If you are not yet a patient of the Greenville Spine Institute or need a refresher on the stretches you are supposed to be doing at home, here are several to get you started:

Shoulder Stretch

Stand just outside the door frame, put each hand on a door frame and lean forward. Hold for 5-10 seconds and repeat 10 times a couple times a day or as needed. You should feel a stretch in the front of your chest.

Glutes Stretch

Sit in a chair, bend the knee and pull one leg up at a time to your chest. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat with the other leg. Repeat 10 times on both legs. You should feel a stretch in your glutes and hips.

Neck Stretch

Sit in a chair with your back straight. Hold one side of the chair and turn your head to the side opposite your hold and look down towards the ground. Lean away from the hand holding the chair till you feel a stretch in your neck and hold for 5-10 seconds. Repeat 10 times each side. This should feel pretty good and help loosen your neck.

Lower Back Stretch

Sit in a chair and put one ankle over the opposite knee and lean forward so your chest is over your knee, or as close as possible. Hold for 5-10 seconds for each leg. Repeat 10 times for each leg. You should feel a stretch in the back of the leg that is over the knee and into your lower back. This can also help with sciatica.

So there you go – four easy stretches you can do a couple times a day for a New Years resolution that is attainable.

Living a Pain-Free Life

If you’ve been experiencing pain and don’t know where to turn, give us a call at Greenville Spine. We would be more than happy to sit down with you and discuss treatment options. Give us a call at (864) 631-1420 and let’s get you started on accomplishing all your health goals.