Exercises for Back Pain and Tendinitis
Tendonitis simply means an inflamed tendon and the basic course of treatment with exercise is also simple. Your particular type of tendonitis and where it came from, however, can radically affect what exercises a physical therapist may recommend for you. Exercises that treat back pain and tendonitis are a good place to start. Loosening the muscles attached to the tendon will usually treat the underlying cause of the tendonitis and thus get rid of the pain.
Adductor Tendonitis Stretch
Tendonitis often occurs with repetitive use. If you run, kick or play sports that cause you to stop and quickly change direction, you may find yourself with adductor tendonitis. It is also possible to get tendonitis from an awkward movement or lifting something too heavy for you. Stretching exercises for the adductors will loosen up the muscles in your inner thighs or groin area. These muscles attach to the pelvis, which is right below the lower back. The standing adductor stretch lengthens the adductors. To perform this exercise, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Step your feet out to twice that distance. Point your toes straight ahead and place your hands on your hips. With a straight back, lean forward slightly and bend one knee with the other leg straight. You should feel a stretch in the inside of your straight leg. Hold for 15 seconds and then do the other side if it is tight too.
Iliotibial Band Tendonitis Stretch
Iliotibial band tendonitis, or IT band tendonitis, can also be the result of overuse from repetitive activities like running or sports. The IT band is a tract of tissue that runs from the pelvis down the outer thigh and across the outside of the knee. Pain or stiffness in the lower back and knee are some of the symptoms of iliotibial tendonitis. Stretching the IT band is a simple way to lessen the pain from iliotibial band tendonitis. To perform the IT band stretch lying on your side, lie on your left side with your head relaxed on your left arm. Begin with both legs straight, right on top of left. Lift your right leg toward the ceiling and then externally rotate your hip until your foot is perpendicular to the floor with your toes pointing up. Open your leg out behind you and then bring it toward the floor until you feel a stretch in your right outer thigh. Stay in this position for 20 seconds. Repeat on the other side or just perform the stretch on the affected leg.
Short Arc Lift
The short arc lift is a strengthening exercise for recovery from iliotibial band tendonitis. The quadricep muscle in the front of the thigh is the main muscle that contracts during this exercise, but the IT band stabilizes the leg during the movement. Since the lift is similar to a kicking motion, the adductors work too. To perform this exercise, sit on the floor and place a rolled up towel under the knee of your affected leg. Lean back onto your forearms with your elbows in line with your shoulders. Hold both of your legs straight. Your affected knee will bend to accommodate the towel underneath. Then, bring your shin up to straighten your affected knee and hold it up for five seconds before returning it to the floor.
- back image by Valentin Mosichev from Fotolia.com