You may recognise the feeling of wanting to crack your neck, back or muscles. If that’s the case, you’ve probably also had people telling, in full horror, that you shouldn’t be doing that because it can have long lasting effects. Generally speaking, cracking your back cannot do any harm as there isn’t actually anything ‘cracking’ or breaking. When you’re a yoga lover, your back may crack regularly during a routine. If that concerns you, we’re here to educate you on the reason why your back makes these noises, if it is harmful to your body and what you can do to become more flexible when it comes to your back.
What happens when your back is cracking?
Whilst many people crack their joints on a regular basis, most people aren’t aware what actually happens when doing it. Although chiropractors crack necks and backs for a living every single day, not all experts agree on the theory behind back cracking. Some experts believe that adjusting a joint releases gas. Most theories propose that back cracking may be due to air bubbles in the synovial fluid surrounding and lubricating your joints. Others believe that gases like nitrogen, carbon dioxide and oxygen build up between your joints over time. This happens especially when your joints aren’t aligned properly. It’s better to research ways in which you can align your spine rather than cracking your back non-stop.
How to be more flexible
If you know the feeling of a tight back and neck all too well, it’s probably time to do something about your flexibility. By stretching your back on a regular, or even daily basis, it can help to remove tension from your joints which will reduce the amount of back cracks you will experience throughout the day. While it may feel good temporarily to crack your back, it isn’t recommended to do it more than once daily or if you have any underlying issues.. Instead, work on your flexibility by practicing yoga more often. There are a few really good yoga poses for your back out there, which will help you to feel pain or tension relief in no time.
Yoga wheel exercises to help flexibility
One of our favourite yoga attributes, especially for your back, is the yoga wheel. A yoga wheel is, as the name suggests, a wheel that can be used to enhance your flexibility, improve your posture and increase spine mobility during your yoga practices. By using a yoga wheel, you’ll be able to do deeper stretches and gain flexibility in your shoulders, chest or back in a safe way.
If you’re feeling stiff during the day, are struggling with tension in your back or you’re looking to gain flexibility and mobility overall, then it’s a good idea to incorporate a yoga wheel into your daily yoga routine. We understand that it may feel a bit funny to use a yoga wheel for the first time, which is why we have written down our 5 favourite ways to use a yoga wheel. One of our all time favourite yoga wheel exercises for your back is the pose below. Place the yoga wheel on your yoga mat and place it on your upper back. Try to relax as much as you can and get a good stretch out of the pose. If done correctly, you should feel some tension relief in your back.