Many people suffer from low back pain. One main culprit could be tight hamstrings.
The tightness of your hamstrings causes your pelvis to be pulled down and away from the lumbar spine, which puts the lower back in a position of instability–the exact opposite of what it needs. Your back, especially your lumbar spine (lower back), is designed to be fairly stable. The network of muscles in your core (abdominals and pelvic floor) and surrounding your spine are there to support you in an upright position. Our hips, where are legs attach to our pelvis/torso, are meant to be flexible and fluid so we can take strides, moving ourselves from one place to another. But what we typically are doing these days is sitting on our butt, not moving. So our hips (where all of the hamstring muscles connect to the pelvis) get really, really tight. OK, great. But how do tight hamstrings make my back hurt? Well, if your back was designed to be stable and strong, and your hips were meant to be flexible and fluid, but the exact opposite has happened instead, you’re in real trouble!
Yoga is a gentle, sure way to lengthen and elongate the hamstrings. There is a technology of movements and postures specifically designed to release tight hamstrings. Yoga is different from stretching in that there are specific alignment tips that allow for more muscle release. Ways to tilt the pelvis or move the shoulder blades, for example. A qualified yoga teacher can help you stretch and bend in healthy and gentle ways where you’ll start seeing results quickly. You can stretch for years and never get anywhere if you’re doing it incorrectly! The beautiful thing about yoga is that everybody can do it! It may take work and dedication and it may not even feel good at all times, but you’ll see results, feel better and move easier through life. Anything worth doing takes hard work, practice and dedication. Isn’t your body and its health worth a little extra dedication?
Natalie Hain, RYT 200, teaches in Blanco and San Marcos. She is available for private instruction. Please visit casadeyoga.com for the full yoga schedule in Blanco and Johnson City.