Spinal discs are ligaments that hold the bones of the spine together and prevents each set of bones from rubbing against each other. Bulging disc is a condition in which one of the discs is not in its normal position and has protruded out through a crevice, in the spine. This condition occurs gradually over a period of time, and is commonly diagnosed in older people. It is observed that due to the protruding disc, patients tend to walk and stand with a hunchback posture
Exercises for bulging discs provide a natural way to alleviate the discomfort. Bulging discs can be easily treated by performing some exercises. It has been proved that regular exercise can not only relieve your back pain, but also strengthen the back supporting muscles. Your back will feel better as you start doing exercises. There are quite a few exercises that can allow you to experience relief from bulging disc pain.
Bulging Disc Exercises
The key to reduce back pain is to do exercises that improve blood supply to the spinal discs, nerves, ligaments and the muscles affected by the protruding disc. Proper blood circulation will deliver vital nutrients to the bulged out disc, thereby speeding up its healing process. Improved blood circulation to the pinched nerves can also help to numb the pain. Exercise given below, not only accelerate blood flow to these deep structures of the back area but also help to correct the posture by strengthening the muscles supporting the spine.
Exercise #1: You need to have an exercise ball in order to start this exercise session. Make sure to buy a moderately large ball as it has to withstand your weight while you are sitting on it. To begin with, firstly sit on the ball comfortably with your feet touching the floor. Now, as the ball is made from soft elastic and contains air, one can easily move up and down while sitting over the ball. Continue doing this activity for approximately 5 minutes and ensure that your buttocks remain in contact with the ball. Do this exercise daily to get relief from back pain.
Exercise #2: This exercise cannot be done without a mini-trampoline. Although trampoline is commonly used for repeated jumping, people suffering from bulging disc should avoid doing such activities. So, once you get the trampoline, a stationary march while standing for not more than 5 minutes, is all that is required to strengthen the muscles around the bulging disc. When marching on the trampoline without moving, don't forget to keep your neck straight and arms sideways.
Stretching Exercises for Bulging Disc
Stretching exercises reduce back strain and strengthen the abdomen, legs and arms. These exercises have emerged as a useful aid to reduce back pain. Before you start any exercise, a warm-up is essential to reduce stiffness and to decrease the incidence of muscle injuries.
Pelvic Tilt: A stretching exercise that is often recommended for bulging disc patients, is pelvic tilt. This exercise is essential to maintain posture and stability of the lumbar spine. This exercise is very easy to perform and is not at all strenuous. That is why bulging disc patients enjoy doing this exercise. You start this exercise by lying down on the floor on your back, with knees bent. Now tighten your lower abdomen muscles and buttocks, so that your back completely flattens and pelvis tilts upwards. In other words, you have to gently raise the buttocks. A small portion of your back must remain in contact with the floor. Remain in this position for 5 seconds. If you are not comfortable to lie on the floor, you can always use the mat or towel, to get some cushioning.
Knee Chest: In this exercise, you have to lie with your back touching the floor. Now bend one knee and bring it towards the chest. Hold the bent knee for a period of 5 seconds. The other leg should be straight, along the floor. Now come back to the starting position. Repeat the procedure for the other leg.
Knee Rolls: Lie down and roll both the knees (joint together), to the left side and then to the right side. Make sure that your elbows are touching the floor.
Semi Sit-ups: Begin this exercise by first lying down on your back on the floor or mat. Now tuck the chin in and slowly lift your shoulders and head, by stretching both the hands. Now lower the shoulders and stretch both the hands to the left and right knees. Lower completely and then relax. Initially, carry out this exercise in repetitions of 5 and gradually increase.
Back Extensions: This is an important exercise to improve flexibility of the back. However, this is a more intense stretching exercise. Hence, initially you may find it difficult to bear. In this exercise, you have to lie with your stomach touching the floor. Now support your upper body on the elbows. Ensure that your hips are on the floor.
There is one more stretching exercise that helps to alleviate pain. Begin this exercise by standing near a wall and press the upper arm and shoulder against the wall. Now lean your hip on the wall and be in this position for around 10 seconds.
On the whole, people diagnosed with bulging disc cannot afford to remain physically inactive. Unnecessary bed rest weakens the muscles of the back, which may contribute in worsening the pain. All these exercises mentioned above can definitely aid in improving back health.