How to Overcome Shoulder & Lower Back Soreness When Travelling

Back, Pain or Injuries

Lower back pain/ soreness is quite common during travelling especially if the traveller does a lot of walking, carting their heavy backpacks with them. It brings a lot of discomfort as the muscle soreness prevents a good night’s sleep, decrease enjoyment and may slow down the travel. Most of the time, travellers who want a quick fix will douse themselves in painkillers.

Before resorting to pain killers, here are the following mini tools that I bring along during travels to ensure the well-being of my back:

Now you would think how would both the items above help to relieve back pain?

Lower back pain is likely caused by tight hamstrings and/or tight hip flexors and/or erector spinae (spine muscles). Stretching can do wonders to relieve the ache of your body- when your muscles are tight, you gently stretch to loosen them. For a more useful guide, please read my previous post on Overcoming Lower Back Pain.

Even though you may normally do yoga or stretching exercises in your gym, once you are out there travelling, you will no longer be stretching those muscles. After a while, your muscles will become tight. When you attempt to stretch your tired hamstring muscles after a long day’s of walk, you will find it much easier to stretch using an exercise band as it will help you stretch easier.

Stretches you can do (click on the link to view the pictures):

1.  Hamstring stretches . You can do it either standing or sitting

Hamstring stretch

2. Spinal twist (either lying down or sitting or both)

3. Downdog pose– bring relief to the upper back muscles.

The stretching exercise above, done properly, can offer immense relief. Before I do frequent stretching exercises, I used to suffer from lots of muscle soreness which made me dread travelling.  After incorporating stretches in my workouts and travelling, I can find relieve in sore muscles.

In my next post, I will include more simple stretches can help you relieve muscle stiffness.

Caution: Never stretch a cold muscle. The best time to stretch is after some walking or when your muscles are warm from movement. And stretch until mild discomfort and hold it for 30 seconds. Do not force yourself to stretch beyond your flexibility points. If you experience sharp pain that does not go away after a few days, it can mean more than just muscle soreness. Seek medical care.

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