Low Back Stabilization Procedures
Alternate Wall Angels
Stand with your back to the wall, about six inches away, and feet should width apart. Place the back of your hands (dorsum) and elbows in contact with the wall. Make sure you are bracing, standing with good posture and maintain contact of hands and elbows on the wall while performing the exercise.
Note: Exercise may be started while lying on your back, on a firm surface. Progress standing agains the wall and then to 6 inches away.
Perform a "snow-angel" movement, superior to inferior arc, moving elbows towards your sides and then return to starting position. Slow controlled movements are important. Form start, movement, and return to start should take two to three breaths. Repeat 5 times, twice per day.
Sit on a ball with low back in "neutral" posture for up to five minutes (or longer) periodically during the day.
Sit with one foot off the floor for up to ten seconds. Repeat on opposite side. Perform one repetition on each side that lasts up to ten seconds. Perform twice per day.
With a steady fluid movement, start by raising the right leg and left arm with a weight (optional) in hand simultaneously, return to neutral position and progress without rest by raising the left leg and right arm with a weight (optional) in hand simultaneously and return to neutral. Perform this cycle five times, twice per day. Begin by holding light weight in each hand. Gradually increase the weights.
Lift right arm and left leg simultaneously. Do not let your back sag, your pelvis tip or shift your body weight to one side or the other. Hold position for three seconds and then repeat on other arm and leg. Repeat procedure five times, twice per day. When this exercise becomes stable, add "Birddog II."
Perform "birddog" over a ball. Hold position for three seconds. Repeat procedure five times, twice per day.
Braced Push-up Table
Brace body with spine in good, straight posture. Hands shoulder width apart with a locked, neutral spine. Stand a few feet back from the counter-top or table.
Elbows bend allowing the chest to approach the table, hold, return to neutral. This cycle should take two to three breaths to accomplish. Repeat 3-5 times, twice a day.
Transverse Abdominus (Supine)
Tighten muscles 360 degrees around your waist as if you were going to resist a hit in your abdomen. Or, try to cough and stop just as you are about to make the sound. Contract 360 degrees around the waist, only 1/3 of a full contraction. Hold and breathe normal. Narrowing on sides of waist is the visible sign done correctly. As you breathe IN the abdomen should rise up. Hold for two to three breaths, (5-8 seconds) repeat 10 times.
Progress to practice holding for 3-5 minutes while in a sitting posture on a stable surface.
Protocol- Perform 2 times per day. Progress as you master the technique.
Progress to an unstable surface. Hold for 1 minute, repeat 10 times, twice a day.
Start in a corner of the room or a doorway. Place your hands at shoulder height, slightly wider than shoulder width apart, two to three feet away from the corner.
Tighten your core by bracing and keeping your spine stiff and lean into the corner. You will feel a stretch in the front of your chest area (pectoralis muscles) and between should blades. Return to start position. Total movement is performed for 2-3 breaths. Perform 3-5 times, twice a day.
Stretches for Elbow, Carpal Tunnel, Forearm
Flexor Muscle Stretch
Start with arm out in front of you, elbow straight, palm down facing the ground. Gradually extend your wrist, grasping your fingertips with your other hand and apply a slow stretch. Each cycle should take approximately 2-3 breaths to complete from start, to full stretch back to start.
Extensor Muscle Stretch
Next, make a fist with your arm in the same start position and flex your wrist with a slow, steady stretch as far as comfortable. This cycle should take approximately 2-3 breaths to complete from start to full stretch and back to start. Perform both exercises, three times every 3 hours.
Flossing for Brachial Plexus
Begin either standing or seated with spine braced with good posture. Bring involved side arm up horizontal to the ground with the palm up, elbow fully extended and your neck and head flexed sideways toward your arm.
Slowly, without causing any increase in symptoms, flex your neck and head away from the arm that is up while simultaneously flexing your elbow. Slowly flex your head while simultaneously straightening your elbow to the starting position.
If you experience any increase in symptoms, stop the movement at that point and then gradually increase to full motion as tolerated. Total time for the fully cycle of movement, start to finish should take about 2-4 breaths (8-10 seconds)
Start in spine neutral posture with bracing technique. Progress slowly to end position, then return to start. The cycle from start to end to return to start should take 2-3 breaths. Start slow. If any increase or appearance of symptoms occurs, make note and shorten the arc of movement until symptoms decrease. Repeat 2-5 times, twice per day.
Shoulder Decompression and Scapular Retreaction
Push Away Median Nerve, Scapular Protraction Cover Ears, Ulnar Nerve
Throw Behind, Shoulder Depression Track Baton, Internal Rotation
Form a "plank" by bridging on your elbows/forearms and toes. Hold for five seconds, repeat five times twice per day. When this becomes stable, proceed to intermediate level.
While in the plank position, lift one foot off the floor. Hold for five seconds, then repeat on other side. Perform five repetitions on each side twice per day. When this becomes stable, proceed to Intermediate Advanced level.
Perform the plank exercise with ball under lower legs. Maintain position for ten seconds, perform one repetition twice per day. when this exercise becomes stable, proceed to Advanced level.
While in plank position with ball under lower legs, extend hip and hold for five seconds, perform one repetition on each side twice per day.
Begin seated so your legs can swing free underneath your buttocks, spine straight and braced. Simultaneously extend your neck and your leg up to lock your knee into full extension on the side of sciatica.
Next, simultaneously flex your neck and your knee. If there is any dramatic increase in your symptoms, shorten your movement to the point where the symptoms start to increase. Repeat and increase the range of movement of the flossing technique as tolerated. Total movement will be for 2-4 breaths. Start 2-4 repetitions, twice per day.
Start in seated position with bracing techniques and good posture. Make sure your band or tubing is proper secured. Use slow controlled movement allowing for a full cycle to take 2-3 breaths (6-8 seconds). Start with 6-8 repetitions, one set. Progress to 8-12 repetitions, two sets. Then consider using double strength tubing.
Infraspinatus/Teres Minor and Middle Trapezius (make sure elbows stay into side)
Start standing about six inches away from the wall with your back against the wall and feet shoulder width apart. Your hands should be at the height of your ears. Keep the back of your hands (dorsum) and elbows in contact with the wall.
Slowly let your torso drop slightly, sliding your back on the wall with your arms stationery. (wall slide with torso). Stabilize your shoulder blades and hands as the torso glides down. Return to starting position. This cycle should take 2-4 breaths to complete. Repeat 5-10 times twice a day.