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Safe Back Stretching for Collapsed Discs

author image Jason Aberdeene
Jason Aberdeene has been a freelance writer since 2008. His articles have appeared in the "UCSD Guardian" and on various websites, specializing in teen health. An assistant at Kagan Physical Therapy since 2009, Aberdeene has a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego.
Safe Back Stretching for Collapsed Discs
A woman stretches her back. Photo Credit Barry Austin/Digital Vision/Getty Images

A collapsed disc often occurs when a disc between your vertebrae shrinks due to aging. The shrinking is caused by dehydration in the disc, leaving the disc susceptible to herniation or a rupture. If the disc collapses, the space between your vertebrae that the disc was cushioning is exposed. This leads to direct pain in this region. Safe back stretching exercises improve range of motion in your back without risking further herniation or rupture. Before attempting these stretches or exercises, consult your doctor to see if physical exercise is recommended for your particular condition.

Pelvic Tilt

This lower back stretching exercise helps relieve pressure and strain if you have a collapsed disc in this area. Lie on your back with your arms at your sides and knees bent. With your feet flat on the floor, tighten your abdominal muscles and tilt your lower torso up and off the ground. Hold for 10 seconds before relaxing. Repeat this exercise 10 times or until you are fatigued.

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Curl Stretch

This curl stretch helps you strengthen and stretch your back, as well as your hips. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Bring your knees up to your chest, wrapping your hands around your ankles. Hold this curled position for a count of 10 seconds before extending your legs back out. Repeat this motion five times or until you feel fatigued. As you improve, hold the stretch for a longer period of time.

Hip Extension

This hip extension exercise reduces pressure on your back and strengthens your back and hip muscles. Get down on all fours, placing your knees flat on the ground. Lift your right leg up and away from your body until it is fully extended and parallel with your back. Hold this stretch for a count of 10 seconds before bringing your leg back in. Repeat this motion until you are fatigued.

Lying Prone Extension

This lying prone stretch helps create separation between your vertebrae, relieving pressure and stress on your back. Lie on your stomach with your arms at your sides and knees slightly bent. Push up onto your arms, keeping your legs flat on the floor while your upper torso is off of the ground. Try to keep your pelvis down while performing this stretch. Hold for a 10 count before relaxing. Repeat this stretch several times or until fatigued.

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