How To Strengthen Your Back

How To Strengthen Your BackOur spine and central nervous system work together to maximize our health and fitness; when they work well together, we enjoy optimal wellness. But when things are off, we can feel the pain and adverse health effects pretty quickly. Whether you are nursing yourself back from an injury or looking for preventative measures to stay on the right track, Stability Health Center offers tips to improve the overall strength of your back.

Plank Exercise

Most people assume this exercise is purely an abdominal workout, but it is a great exercise for our back muscles as well. Our back works to keep our body centered while our abs muscles are in use. So essentially getting a 6-pack from this exercise is a bonus.

Start by coming onto your forearms and making sure your shoulders are lined up with your elbows. When you are ready, press up onto your toes and press into your forearms to lift your body off the ground. Keeping your gaze steady on the floor in front of you, tuck your abs and try to make your back as straight as possible by lowering your hips closer to the ground. Hold for 30-seconds, rest, and then do it again. If you do this exercise daily, your back will become immensely strong.

Leg To Arm Exercise

This exercise also works multiple parts of your body – legs, glutes, arms, abs and back. Again, most people would not readily assume it strengthens your back, but this is a great full body exercise that is convenient and easy to do at home.

Start on your hands and knees and align your knees under your hips and your wrists under your shoulders. Raise your right arm out in front of you while lifting your left leg off the ground. Straighten your right arm and left leg while tucking your abs and making sure to keep your back as straight as a board. Then, when you feel steady, bring your right elbow and left knee together under you, hold for one second and then lengthen out again. Do it a few times and then switch arms and legs.

For additional stretches that are not as intensive, we compiled a stretching list as well.

Chiropractic BioPhysics (CPB)

In addition to these exercises, Dr. Justin Favreau offers a unique, non-invasive treatment called Chiropractic BioPhysics. CPB uses biology, physiology, physics, geometry, and anatomy to identify the causes of your pain, discomfort, loss of mobility, and altered health. That means your diagnosis – and treatment – will be based on sound scientific and chiropractic principles. Dr. Favreau also offers chiropractic adjustments to lengthen the spine, relieve pressure and to alleviate any spine-related pain. Dr. Favreau firmly believes that with proper alignment of all of you bones, joints and muscles (especially your spine) then stress on the central nervous system will be relieved and eventually be able to heal itself fully if you ever do suffer an injury. Dr. Favreau emphasizes holistic healing and that surgery should be the last option.

To learn more about our services and to find out if you qualify for a free consultation, please contact us at 206-497-4962.


Easy Exercises To Ease Sciatica Pain

sciatica pain, stretches for back painFor those that suffer from sciatic aggravation, sciatic flare-ups can be the most excruciating pain to experience. Chiropractors are trained to identify and treat sciatic pain using non-invasive techniques so as to ease the pain overtime. Dr. Justin Favreau of Stability Health Center recommends a variety of easy moves to alleviate the pain and pressure during a sciatic flare-up.

If you’re dealing with a flare up, one of the most common causes is: Piriformis Syndrome. This happens when the piriformis, a small muscle deep in your hips, becomes tight and compresses the sciatic nerve, often leading to burning pain and numbness on one side of your butt and down the back of your leg.

Remaining stagnant is the worst thing you could do when the pain starts to burn in your back, legs and hips. In order to alleviate immediate pain there are stretches you can do to loosen the tight muscles. Doing these stretches multiple times per week, either in the morning or in the evening, will slowly ease the intensity of the pain over time.

Reclined Pigeon Stretch

Start by lying down on your back. Bend your left leg and pull it into your chest with your left arm. Next, bend your right knee and place your right ankle onto the top of your left thigh. Extend your right arm through your thighs and clasp your hands behind your bent left thigh, stretching. Your hip flexor may feel really tight at first but if you breathe slowly and rock back and forth on your back then the tension will loosen.

Low Lunge

This is a simple stretch that is great on your hips, back and for relieving sciatica pain. You can do lunge stretches at work, waiting for your morning coffee or right before you go to bed. To do this stretch, start by putting your body in a runner’s lunge position, with your right leg bent and your left leg out behind you, hands framing your front right leg. Making sure that your front right knee is directly over your ankle place your left knee on the ground with the top of your foot on the ground, extending the leg behind you. Placing your hands lightly on your hips, once you feel balanced raise your hips up and lean forward to feel the stretch in the left hip flexor.

Spinal decompression is an alternative way to release stress and tension in your back, which also plays a large role in sciatic pain. Bulging discs, herniated discs, degenerative disc disease, squeezed nerves, sciatica, and arm or leg pain is frequently caused by abnormal stress and pressure on your discs.

Dr. Favreau offers Spine Decompression Therapy to patients seeking treating beyond these exercises. It is a non-invasive and offers gentle decompression of the disc by using a computerized traction table.

In addition to treating patients with sciatica pain, Dr. Favreau is also certified in a well-regarded specialty known as Chiropractic BioPhysics (CPB). Unlike regular chiropractic that mainly focus on immediate pain relief, CPB goes one step further to also correct the source of the problem. That’s why most patients under the care of a CBP chiropractor not only report relief from pain and discomfort, but as their posture begins to align, they notice other conditions clearing up as well.

To learn more about our services and for a free consultation, call us at 206-497-4962.

Treating A Spinal Compression Fracture

compression fracture, treating a compression fractureRemember when you were 10-years-old and climbing a ladder or tree was easy? You were fearless and your balance was impeccable. Trying to emulate that same grace thirty years later may not be so easy and unfortunately by the time you realize you aren’t so agile, you’re lying on the ground with a spinal compression fracture.

For people who have compressed their spine in a fall or in an accident, chronic pain can sometimes be a daily struggle. Some compression fractures may heal on their own over time while others result in immediate or delayed surgery.

When a fracture is allowed to heal naturally, the initial excruciating shockwaves of pain are intense for the first 72 hours. Sleeping on your back or a hard surface is recommended, as is ibuprofen for inflammation and mild pain relief. The natural healing cycle is approximately three months depending on the severity and location of the injury but a lot of holistic, at-home work needs to go into strengthening your back.

Dr. Justin Favreau of Stability Health Center in Seattle offers a number of chiropractic services to treat compression pain. For example, spinal decompression therapy is an effective, non-surgical treatment that alleviates back pain along with other problems connected with spinal disc injuries.

For the first few days of your injury, movement should be extremely limited. If it isn’t necessary, stay put! But as time goes by you will want to start light exercise and stretching to avoid an excess build-up of scar tissue. Becoming too attached to bed rest can also lead to bone loss and muscle loss, which could make you more injury prone in the future.

A back brace may also help you during your recovery and it works similarly like a cast for a broken bone. But similar to too much bed rest, depending too heavily on a back brace could also lead to a weakening of muscle and bone.

For more specialized care, Dr. Favreau highly recommends Chiropractic BioPhysics (CPB) – a highly-advanced, scientific and proven chiropractic technique which corrects and restores your spine back to alignment. CPB uses sound scientific and chiropractic principles to diagnose and treat your ailment.

Unlike regular chiropractic care that mainly focuses on immediate pain relief, Dr. Favreau uses CPB to go one step further to correct the source of the problem.

For more information about our services and to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Favreau, call us at 206-497-4962.

3 Exercises To Soothe Lower Back Pain

exercises for back pain, lower back painWe may not know how we hurt our lower backs, but we can sure feel it when the pain sets in! Between work and our commute, the wear and tear can be as bad as an injury caused by something specific. Dr. Justin Favreau of Seattle’s Stability Health Center offers three exercises that you can easily do before, during, and after your workday to help ease your lower back pain.

The Knee Drop

This exercise is great if you find yourself sitting at a desk all day. Lay down on your back with your knees bent and arms out wide. Take one of your bent knees and drop it to the side, trying to drop it as close to the floor as possible. You will feel an amazing stretch along the inside of your thigh, glutes and lower back. Bring the knee back to starting position and repeat as needed, then switch legs.

Butterfly Exercise

We have all done the butterfly stretch at one point or another but if you suffer from lower back soreness this stretch is crucial to relieving a bit of pressure and lengthening your spine. Start sitting with your heels touching. Grab your ankles and try to pull your chest down towards your knees and feet, while gently extending your knees towards the ground – do not push yourself too hard in this position! If your knees need to stay raised or you cannot lean forward allow your body to relax in the pose wherever is most comfortable. This will stretch your inner thighs and take a lot of weight off your back. Expert tip: let your head hang loose and give your neck a break.

Sit And Reach

This simple stretching exercise will relieve a lot of back pain over time if you practice regularly. The deeper and longer you can sit in this pose the more relief you will feel. Start seated with your legs stretched out in front of you, knees together. Without leaning your body forward, reach your arms out in front of you as far as they can go before you bend your back. When you have reached your threshold, drop your hands on your legs and hang your head loose. You do not want to reach past your limit here because then you will actually be straining your back. The more you practice this exercise the farther you will be able to push your natural limit.

If your back pain is more advanced than everyday aches and pains, Dr. Favreau is certified in Chiropractic BioPhysics (CPB) – a unique, non-invasive chiropractic technique that corrects and restores your back to alignment. Unlike regular chiropractic techniques that mainly focus on immediate pain relief, CPB goes one step further to also correct the source of the problem. Consider this treatment if your back pain is affecting your quality of life.

If you would like more information about our services and to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Favreau, call us at 206-497-4962.