How Inversion Therapy Can Boost Your Health
If back pain or sciatica agony has got you down, inversion therapy may be able to turn it around – literally. Inversion therapy involves suspending yourself upside down to alleviate pressure on our spine. The upside-down position uses gravity to achieve spinal decompression, elongating your spine and decompressing the disks, nerves and other related structures.
Inversion Therapy Benefits
MayoClinic reports decompression can alleviate pain, particularly pain in the low back or caused by sciatica. SpineUniverse notes other reported benefits include:
- • Improved circulation
- • Deep stretching of ligaments and muscles
- • Reduction of muscle spasms
Stretching prompts the lymph glands to boost the production of lymphatic fluids. Increased circulation helps carry those fluids and other waste products out of the body at a more rapid rate. Stress relief is another benefit many experience from inversion therapy.
Additional benefits can come from combining inversion therapy with other exercises, such as abdominal crunches or stretching, which again take advantage of the gravitational pull.
While the benefits can be notable, the practice is not for everyone. Hanging upside down for an extended period increases blood pressure, along with an increase in pressure in your eyeballs.
Those with high blood pressure, glaucoma or heart disease may want to steer clear of inversion therapy. And everyone should always consult with their healthcare providers before they start a new routine.
Choosing an Inversion Table
Inversion tables are available for home use, and some of them fold up for easy storage in between sessions. Look for a solid frame, a capacity that can hold your weight and any extras you would appreciate and use. Quality inversion tables typically come with a comfortable yet firm backrest that evenly supports your back and head without impeding your airflow.
Safety features include extended handles to easily turn upright and a locking mechanism that holds the table securely in place while inverted. Some of the high-end inversion tables come with advanced brake systems that control the angle of your inversion more precisely than the old-school tether straps.
Whatever table you choose, the key is to start slowly. Your body can feel a huge difference with an angle as slight as 15 degrees. Move to greater angles only after your body is properly acclimated and you’re ready to boost your benefits even further.