Most pain relief treatments often ignore or pay little attention to psychological factors, so in honor of yesterday being National Relaxation Day, Relax The Back wants to highlight a few basic relaxation techniques to help bring you back into balance. We understand that when hectic lifestyles and debilitating pain get you down, it can be difficult to abide by the conventional wisdom of staying positive for a speedy recovery. Here are some simple techniques you can practice to help improve your state of mind:
- Take deep breaths – Inhale so that your abdomen or lower belly expands. If you notice your chest rising, this is indicative of shallow breathing. Start over, breathe in, and fill your lungs from the bottom to the top.
- Visualization – Imagine your peaceful place as vividly as you can, trying to engage all of your senses. Visually walk around the scene, hearing the noises, smelling the flora, feeling the air, etc. Even if you don’t have the luxury to physically get away, you can give your mind a change of pace by practicing visualization.
- Body Scan – Lie on your back, arms relaxed by your side, eyes open or closed. Engage in deep breathing to relax and turn your focus to every inch of your body, starting at your right foot and slowly working your way up your right side to the tip of your head and back down the left. Pay attention to any tense muscles or pain, and observe how your body feels.
- Music – Listen to your favorite song to turn your attitude around or a calming tune with a slow tempo to align your heartbeat. Classical tunes and artists with soothing voices help do the trick. Visit our Facebook page for song suggestions every Monday that are sure to put you in a good mood or help you relax.
- Self-Massage – When your crazy schedule leaves you no time for a visit to a massage therapist, give yourself a massage using out best-selling Theracane or the Dolphin Lite Handheld Massager. A self-massage can help you release tension and relax without hurting your wallet.
Take the time to find what techniques work for you. It only takes a few minutes to refocus your attention, but you’ll be reaping the benefits for far longer when you’re in a healthy state of mind.
An increasingly popular fitness tool, Exercise and Therapy Foam Rollers are lightweight, cylindrical pieces of dense foam, but don’t let their resemblance to pool noodles fool you. They’re used as a simple, yet highly effective self-massage technique that offer many of the same benefits as a traditional deep-tissue massage without the steep price tag. Foam rolling works based on self-myofascial release. Fascia is a fibrous, connective tissue that binds your muscles, bones, nerves and joints. Over time or after injuries, your fascia form soft tissue adhesions, which can cause trigger points and tightness. The best way to attack these tight knots is direct pressure. Amassage therapist can apply the right amount of pressure to relieve these knots but a foam roller is the next best alternative. It’s always available and one purchase covers all sessions!
You can use foam rollers before and after exercise or whenever necessary. Simply position the area or tender spot you’d like to massage on the foam roller, and let your body weight do all the work by rolling back and forth while using arms or legs to support the body.
Foam rolling should be an important part of your day, whether you’re a serious athlete or a physical therapy patient.
If you’re wondering whether you stand to benefit from foam rollers, they help with the following:
- Pain relief: Foam rollers work to release myofascia adhesions that cause muscle pain and soreness.
- Flexibility: Stretching and massaging will improve the flexibility of surrounding lower back muscles, reducing lower back pain. Flexibility also increases your range of motion, ensuring good posture, balance and normal movement.
- Prevention of further injury: Tight muscles can lead to injuries during exercise or other physical activities. By massaging away fascia buildup, foam rollers prevent your muscles from becoming injury trigger points
- Stress relief: Applying pressure on knots releases built-up tension and helps loosen your muscles. If you’ve been sitting all day at the office or are stressed, foam roll the tension away.
Our Exercise and Therapy Foam Rollers come in five sizes, including full and half round shapes. Versatile, affordable, and easy-to-use, they’re one of our most popular products. See for yourself why foam rollers have become one of the most widely used therapeutic and conditioning products on the market.