5 simple exercises to relieve back pain from sitting all day, according to the chiropractor stars of TikTok

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  • Sitting all day, working at a desk, or leaning over a computer screen can cause all kinds of aches and pains.
  • Proper stretching, especially your back, neck, hips, and shoulders, can help.
  • Doctors, physical therapists, and chiropractors are using the social media app TikTok to share some of the most effective home exercises to relieve back pain.
  • If you have had surgery or a serious injury, consult your doctor about these exercises.

Months into coronavirus lockdowns, with many people working from home offices and hunched over laptops all day, back and neck pain is at an all-time high, surveys have found.

But, given the pandemic, enrolling in physical therapy or getting a doctor's appointment isn't as smooth a process as usual.

In lieu of in-person advice, a growing number of people have been turning to TikTok, the wildly popular social media app, where doctors, chiropractors, and yoga teachers are offering up their expertise pro bono, one minute-long video at a time. Advertisement

These are some of the best quick and easy stretching techniques from TikTok you can use at home. Anyone who has had a serious injury or recent surgery should consult their doctor first.

You can stretch your whole shoulder and neck with one simple move

@bodyofyouth

Headache ? ##LittleBitFancy ##headacherelief ##headachechallenge ##neckpainrelief ##neckpain ##neckinjury ##posturecorrection ##posturecheck ##neckcrack ##pov

♬ Do It - Chloe x Halle

If you have neck tension or headaches, try this stretch from licensed physical therapist Clint Harwick. With one arm behind your back, place your other hand on the top of your head and gently tilt your head down and to the side. Hold for 30 seconds. Harwick recommends trying this one after a warm shower when your muscles will be more pliable.

Combat 'tech neck' by sitting up straight and pushing your chin back to stretch your deep neck flexors

@actionhiro

Here’s one exercise for forward tilting heads ##yoga ##neckpain ##tiktokpartner ##learnontiktok

♬ original sound - actionhiro
A common source of neck pain comes from tilting your head forward and down to look at a phone or computer, according to yoga teacher Hiro Landazuri. A quick and easy solution is to sit up, and push your chin down and in. Imagine you are sitting in a car, and pushing your head back into the headrest.
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You'll know you're doing it right if it creates a double chin appearance, Landazuri explains. "It's definitely not the sexiest exercise out there, but I promise you it'll help," he says. It works by stretching the deep neck flexors along the front of your neck, close to your spinal vertebrae.

To keep your lower back pain-free, stretch your hip flexors

@dr.danielaronov

♬ original sound - dr.danielaronov
One of the best techniques for a healthy lower back is to stretch your hip flexors, according to Dr. Daniel Aronov. To do this, put one knee in the corner of a wall, with the shin and top of your foot of your back leg against the wall. Your other knee should be forward with your foot flat on the ground. Slowly try to sit up straight — this may be challenging at first if your hips are tight, so don't force it, but be patient.Advertisement

Eventually the hip flexors where they attach to the spine will loosen. Aronov says he uses this stretch at least two minutes a day, every day.

Try "nerve flossing" for neck, shoulder and back pain

@kaufmanchiropractic

Nerve flossing stretch for back/neck pain ##backpainrelief ##neckpainrelief ##nerveflossing ##chiropractor

♬ original sound - kaufmanchiropractic

Another common source of pain from sitting or poor posture is tightness in the pectoral muscles of the chest as well as your neck, according to chiropractor Cassandra Schroeder of Kaufman Chiropractic.

You can fix this by finding a wall or beam and placing your palm, fingers facing down, against the surface, with your arm straight and parallel to the ground.Advertisement

"You'll know you're tight if you can't put your palm all the way against the wall,"

Then, keeping your contact with the wall, turn and walk slowly away to stretch through your shoulder, back and neck in a technique called "nerve flossing."

Good hip mobility can also help with back pain

@actionhiro

Here’s a non traditional routine that will melt the stress away ##yoga ##hipstretch ##tiktokpartner ##learnontiktok

♬ original sound - actionhiro
When you're stressed and/or sitting all day, your hips and pelvis can be a source of tension that can cause or exacerbate low back pain. Landazuri offers a range of stretches for your psoas, a muscle that runs along the low back through the groin and hip area. Advertisement

These seated stretches know as 90/90s (because both legs are at a 90 degree angle) can help keep your hips mobile and alleviate tightness and aches in your back as a result.

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