Scoliosis is a spinal condition that can affect people of all ages, even babies still in the womb. According to the National Health Service, it’s most common in children, particularly those aged 10 to 15. While many of those with scoliosis will not need a brace or surgery, those with more acute or severe conditions may need exercises, braces or even surgery.
While these popular exercises for people with scoliosis won’t cure spines, they can mitigate back pain and help with dexterity problems. People having private treatment for scoliosis may also find benefits in performing these practices regularly at home.
Step Down and One-Arm Reach
You will need an aerobic step or a sturdy box that can support your weight. First, using the leg that often appears longer when you lay down flat on your back, step onto the box. Put down the opposite leg on the floor as you bend the knee of the leg that’s on the step. As you descend, raise your arm on the same side as the lowered leg. Perform up to three sets of 10 on this side. Do not reverse the exercise with your other leg.
Upward and Downward Dog
In a prone position (i.e., planking), keep your arms stretched straight and push your hips back and up as far as you can. Hold this position for a few seconds before slowly lowering your hips back down. Don’t force yourself if you experience back pain. Perform up to three sets of 10.
Split Stance with Arm Reach
You’ll need plenty of space for this exercise. Using your longer leg, take a big step forward. Keep your torso as upright as you can while shifting your weight back and forth. When moving forward, raise the arm on the opposite side of your forward leg as high as you can. At the same time, reach your other arm back with the palm upwards. This will cause your torso and spine to turn towards the side of your forward leg, but try to keep your torso upright. Perform up to three sets of 10 on this side. Do not reverse the exercise with your other leg.
Why These Exercises?
While seeking treatment from your physician or therapist, they may recommend these and other exercises. After all, only serious cases of scoliosis may warrant surgery, but for more mild or acute conditions, the right treatment exercises can do wonders.
However, if you feel back pain and think it is due to your scoliosis, you might find exercise can mitigate your symptoms, including difficulty performing everyday movements like walking due to the way your spine moves during these activities.
Treatment for mild scoliosis may include options other than exercises or physical therapy. The NHS recommends pain killers, a healthy lifestyle, spinal injections and back braces to help reduce the effect of your condition. However, some of these options are not a long-term solution, and you may have to consider undergoing surgery if your spine shows signs that its condition is getting worse.