We all like to crack joints at least once a day. Whether it is while sitting or after a sports activity, the feeling after they crack is very pleasant. We have a feeling that all the tension we felt in that part of the body has suddenly disappeared. Also if we have a reduced range of motion, after that we may feel that we have regained a full range of motion. Although joint cavitations, as it is professionally called, have long been considered harmful, it has been proven that it is not harmful.
Yet many still have doubts as to whether they are allowed to do the same with their spine or it is something that a trained chiropractor should only do. It is completely safe to do it yourself, of course with controlled movements and in the normal spine range of motion. Then there is no danger to you. But no other risk is accepted, especially if you have an underlying spinal problem. We will tell you how to safely pop your own back at home without a chiropractor, and if you have any problem, consult an expert.
Should you do it at all?
We have already said that it is something you can and should do, but we did not tell you in which situations. When you feel tension and an uncomfortable feeling in your back, you are free to pop your back. You may not be able to do it the right way for the first time, so you may not feel completely relieved afterwards. Don’t worry, it’s normal, it takes time to learn exactly how your body works and then you will do pop much more successfully. If you do it once or twice a day, that is perfectly fine. But if you need to do it every few hours, you need to think about the cause. The solution is not to constantly pop your back, but to consider whether you are sitting too much or sitting incorrectly or just go to a chiropractor or orthopedist to check if you may have a more serious spine problem.
When to stop?
Every responsible fitness trainer, chiropractor or anyone who works with your body will give you the same answer. You have to stop if you feel pain. Cracking your joints is completely safe if it is not accompanied by pain. The pain should not occur if you do everything with controlled movements and not sudden movements that involve twisting. If you feel pain, stop immediately. If that pain doesn’t go away by tomorrow, then it is time to pay a visit to a chiropractor, orthopedist, or physiotherapist to address that issue. If you are not familiar with all the problems that a chiropractor can solve, visit jonasputzhammer.de and find out what a chiropractor does.
Safe ways to pop your own back
1. Stretch over the edge of bed
A very simple exercise that is often effective, especially to pop the thoracic part of the spine which is usually harder to pop compared to other parts. It is important to lie on the edge of the bed so that your head is below your spine. When you lie down, stretch your arms above your head so that your arms are out of bed as well. So stretch gently for a few seconds, then stand up, inhale and repeat the whole move. Repeat several times and be careful how you do this stretching. Just to the point of pain so they don’t get hurt.
Rotation can be performed both sitting and standing. This is one of the most effective ways to pop your back. Orthopedic surgeons recommend this as the best way to do this to yourself. If you do it while standing, connect your fingers in front of you and then rotate your body in the thoracic part of the spine and your hips too. If you do it while sitting, sit with your legs outstretched. Then cross one leg, bent at the knee, over the other. Slowly rotate towards that leg that is bent at the knee. The whole move should look like you are looking over your shoulder and stay in that position for 10 to 20 seconds, then return to the neutral position and then repeat. Then change legs and repeat the process again.
3. Stretching with the help of a foam roller
Foam roller is a very good thing that simulates a deep tissue massage. It also serves for self myofascial release. You need to place the foam roller under your back and roll it at least ten times. You may need more time to pop back with this method than with the previous two we mentioned. But also this has a multiple role, because the goal is not just to pop back, but you will feel relief in all the muscles of the back, not just in the joints. Put the hands behind your head and use the heels to make the movement. You can do it every day.
4. Cat and camel
Cat and camel is a very good method of stretching that stretches both the lumbar and thoracic spine. It should be done because of the mobility that is often impaired due to a lot of sitting. The starting position is on all fours and then you need to move your back by twisting them into an arch and then make an arch in the lumbar region. Many people pop their back that way, buy even if you can’t, still do this stretch regularly.
The most popular stretching in yoga also strengthens your abdominal muscles which are crucial for a healthy spine. Lie on your stomach, then lift your upper body with your arms, while your legs remain on the ground. Hold for a few seconds and then return to the starting position and so on several times. When you’re done, you can move from the cobra pose to the kneeling back extension to completely stretch your spine and pop joints.
The most important thing is not to use too much force when doing this to yourself. Do everything only in the natural range of motion and without anyone helping you, because then it can happen that too much force is used, which can lead to serious injuries and even strokes. So do it only as much as you can naturally, and if that doesn’t help you, consult a chiropractor.