Inversion therapy provides the right amount of gravity-assisted traction to all parts of the body, including the back and neck. The discs and vertebrae in the lower back and neck areas are just the right size to support the weight above them, which makes inversion a natural form of traction.
Here are some gentle stretching and exercise techniques that can help you focus on specific areas of your back and neck during inversion therapy:
Inversion for Lower back:
You can perform gentle stretching exercises to move the muscles and connective tissues in the lower back area. In partial inversion, try rotating gently from side-to-side, or slowly rocking your pelvis forward and backward.
If you have worked up to full inversion, abdominal exercises like sit-ups and crunches can be beneficial for the lower back, as strong abs are key for proper posture. On the inversion table, you can also try a gentle back extension by placing your hands behind your head on the bed frame and pushing your body in an arch away from the table.
Inversion for Upper back:
If you experience upper back pain due to stress and muscle tension, it’s important to fully relax while inverted. Deep breathing exercises can be helpful, and partner work like an inverted back and shoulder massage can be very relaxing. Movements like rounding your shoulders forward and pushing them back or stretching one arm at a time across your torso can also help extend upper back muscles.
Inversion for your Neck:
Rotating your head from side to side is a beneficial movement for the neck. Partner massages to the base of the head and back of the neck are also very relaxing (be sure not to apply pressure to the front of the neck). You can add gentle inverted traction to your neck by resting your arms behind your head at the base of your skull, but don’t pull, just let the weight of your arms do the work.