Updated: Nov 6, 2020
Although cracking the back may feel good, it can result in injury, and it will not address any possible underlying conditions that may be causing the discomfort.
When a person cracks their back, the sudden movement causes air pockets in the synovial fluid of the joints to react with a popping or cracking noise.
A person should consult a Chiropractor if they frequently have back or neck pain. For those with occasional discomfort, cracking the back might bring temporary relief or satisfaction.
The following stretches can help ease tightness and may also cause the cracking sensation for some people.
Cat and Camel
Cat and camel is a technique that stretches out the back. The back may crack during the stretch. To do the cat and camel, a person should start on all fours, with the hands flat on the floor in line with the shoulders and the knees in line with the hips. Gently raise the back into an arch, tucking the head between the arms. Hold for a few seconds.
Return the spine to a flat, neutral position. Arching the back, lower the stomach toward the floor and lift the head to look toward the ceiling. Hold for a few seconds. Return to neutral.
The movements that it involves can cause a person’s back to crack. To perform the sitting rotation stretch, a person should start by sitting on the floor with both legs straight out in front of the body. Cross the left leg over the right leg. Slowly twist toward the bent left leg, placing the left hand behind the body for support. Place the right arm on the outer side of the bent left thigh and use it to twist a bit further. Look over the shoulder and hold the stretch for about 30 seconds. Return to the start position slowly. Repeat on the right side.
The bridge is a more difficult stretch, so people should be cautious before attempting it.
To perform the bridge stretch, a person should: Lie on the back with the legs out straight. Bend the legs at the knee and place the feet firmly on the ground.
Straighten the arms alongside the body. Raise the hips toward the ceiling, lifting them until they align with the torso and thighs. Place the body weight on the feet and shoulders. Hold the stretch for about 30 seconds and then slowly lower the hips back toward the ground.
People looking for a more advanced stretch can place their hands above their heads with the palms flat on the ground. From this position, they can push the shoulders off the ground.
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Article: Tips for a Healthy Back