Trigger Point Stretch for Low Back Pain

Did you know the Psoas can refer pain to the low back. Here’s how you tackle it with a Theracane – drop both knees to one side to move internal organs out of the way and search for that bruise-like tenderness.

Locate the Quadratus Lumborum (QL) in the soft muscular space between the base of the rib cage and top of the hip. It’s a large muscle that can be triggerpointed with a softball or the edge of a workout bench from the back and oblique (side of the waist). If the QL is too tight it can pull the SI joint out of alignment so don’t be surprised if you get a nice adjustment.

Locate any bruise-like tenderness in the glutes preferably with a lacross or tennis-size ball. Be sure to efficiently probe from the top ridge to the outer portion of the hip working your way down to the base of the glutes in horizontal fashion. A smaller ball will allow you to go deep to release these muscles. If you feel pain shooting down the leg, relocate as this could be the sciatic nerve.

Stretch you glutes in two ways:

  1. Position yourself on your back. Drive your knee up to the opposite armpit. Anchor with both hands and breath deeply to allow the muscle to relax. Switch when the tension subsides. (Not shown)
  2. Position yourself on your back. With knees bent and both feet planted on the floor, place your ankle on your opposite knee and pull from the shin of the bent knee with interlaced fingers. If the reach is challenging, use a strap over the shin as you pull the bent knee towards your chest. You legs should be positioned like a figure 4. You will feel the glute of the leg whose ankle is on the knee. Breath deeply to allow the muscle to relax. Switch when the tension subsides. (Not shown)
  3. Gentle spinal twist- Position yourself on your back and with both knees bent, drop both to one side. You may position your arms like a T lining your hands at shoulder-level, palms face up for optimal mobility in the opposing shoulder, chest and oblique with the low back.

Spinal Twist- Position yourself on your back lining one straight leg up with your body while crossing your bent knee over your to the opposite side with a goal of getting the knee as close to the ground as comfortably possible. You may position your arms like a T lining your hands at shoulder-level, palms face up for optimal mobility in the opposing shoulder, chest and oblique with the low back.

Scorpion stretch – Position yourself on your belly having on leg straight and in line with your body while positioning your arms like a T only this time, palms face down. Bring the leg that is not in line with your body up toward the opposite arm with a bent knee to open that front hip. Your goal with practice will ultimately be to touch that foot to the floor and anchor it with the opposite hand. This stretch surprises most folks when they see they are capable of doing this but it is an awesome way to gauge good back flexibility!