A curvature of the spine may fall under the categories of scoliosis, kyphosis or lordosis. Scoliosis defines a sideways deviation of the spine and is the most common type of abnormality. Kyphosis refers to an excess curvature outward of the upper back to look like a hump. Lordosis occurs when the lower spine curves inward excessively. Exercises may help improve the condition of these curvatures.
Video of the Day
The hamstring stretch is an exercise that lengthens the hamstring muscles on the back of the upper legs. Tight hamstrings decrease mobility in the hips. Improving hip flexibility is beneficial for adults with scoliosis because it can make performing typical activities such as picking up objects from the floor easier. These actions are difficult when scoliosis has decreased mobility. To stretch the hamstrings, lie on your back with both knees bent and your feet on the floor. Extend your right leg straight. Grab the leg behind the knee using both hands. Keep your knee straight and pull your leg toward you until you feel a stretch in your right hamstring. Hold for the desired length of time. Perform this stretch every day.
Lever Seated Crunch
Strong abdominal muscles stabilize the spine and can counteract the hyperextension of the lumbar spine associated with lordosis. The lever seated crunch strengthens the rectus abdominis muscle of the abs with a seated crunch machine. Sit on the machine with your shoulders at the same height as the padded lever. Place your feet hips-width apart on the floor with your knees bent. The seat is adjustable by removing a pin under the seat and sliding it to the correct height. Cross your arms on top of the lever. Keep your hips pressed into the back of the seat and bend forward from the waist, pushing down on the lever. Round your back as you bend forward and engage your abdominal muscles. Sit upright to complete a seated crunch.
Half Frog Pose
Stretching the muscles that flex the spine forward may help those suffering from kyphosis. These muscles include the rectus abdominis and the obliques. Half frog pose is a yoga exercise that stretches the muscles of the abdominals and all of the muscles along the front of the body. Lie on your stomach with your legs straight. Place your hands on the floor in front of you and straighten them to push your upper body and pelvis off the floor, curving your spine backward into a "C" shape as best you can. Bend your left knee to bring your heel to your buttocks. Grab the top of your left foot with your hand and push it down on the outside of your left hip, or as far as you can. Hold for the desired length of time, then repeat on the other side.