Forget Bending & Touching your Toes…
Forget Bending and Touching your Toes in the Morning….
Chiropractor Dr Rohan Kapoor
We’ve all seen the old school stretching regime where you hop out of bed and the first thing you do is bend over and touch your toes. However, we now know that this is not a good action to do first thing in the morning…
Why is that?
When you go to bed and stay there for many hours on end your spine has no compressive load because you are lying in the horizontal position. As a result, what we find is that the discs in between your vertebrae – the main shock absorbers of your spine – “hydrate” over night. This is essentially why you are just that little bit taller in the morning than at night! Expanded (or hydrated) discs create a stiffer spine, and a spine that is less effective in protecting shear stress. Therefore, the discs are more prone to injury at this time of the day. Many people might bend over and injure their disc just by picking up a pencil or doing their shoelaces up – more often than not this will be in the morning.
The good news is that most of the disc reduction we get throughout the day occurs in the first hour that we are awake. So how do we combat no bending forward? Here are a few tips:
-Simply avoid too much forward bending in the first 30-60mins when awake.
-Try to move around the house in an upright position
-If you have to head off to work early and know that you are sitting on your commute, try to get just a little walk in before you do this.
-Instead of this:
-After some walking around the house and maybe a warm shower, try these:
The Bird Dog
The Hip Hinge with Arms Overhead
Both the above exercises are a small element of our Foundational Spinal Strength program developed by our Chiropractors. To learn more or for more information please call the clinic on (03) 9826 2122
Dr. Kapoor is graduate of a Chiropractic degree from Murdoch University in Western Australia, and also holds a Bachelor in Human Movement.
Rohan has a keen interest in sports science, completing a sports science internship at the Victorian Institute of Sport. He is currently an Exercise Rehabilitation / Strength & Conditioning coach at Hawthorn Football Club.