18 May 2014

Over the next few weeks, CASS Fitness will be releasing several stretches you can do if you have lower back pain. Even if you do not have lower back pain, it is important to take preventative measures by not letting your back become tight and compressed. Our trainer, Deonte Toliver, who specializes in lower back rehabilitation and myself (From the unfortunate experience of having lower back pain for two years before finally making a 100% recovery), will show you proper stretching and foam rolling techniques to help alleviate your lower back pain.
The first stretch we will show is the Lying Crossover Stretch.
Here is how you do it:
1.) Lie down on your back on a comfortable surface like an exercise mat or a thick carpet.
2.) Bring your left leg across your body while keeping your right leg straight. Press your left leg on the ground. Also, make sure your shoulders are pinned to the ground.
3.) Hold this position for 15 to 30 seconds.
4.) Repeat on the opposite side.

You should feel a nice stretch on the lower back, the obliques, the gluteus maximus, and the gluteus medius.
My high school cross-country coach had our team do this stretch as part of our warm-up and cool-down routine. It is very low impact, and it helped relieve some of my pain when I was injured. It has helped relieve back pain for clients of mine who experience some back pain from time to time.
If at any time, the stretch hurts your back or any other parts of your body, stop immediately.
I recommend performing this stretch at least two to three times a day (even on days you are not working out). Incorporate it into your warm-up and/or cool-down routine and after a long day of work, especially if you sit at a desk all day.
If you have lower back pain, it is so important to be very proactive about your recovery. I’ll never take a healthy back for granted again. Stay tuned for the next stretch!
-Matt Bible

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