What is Inversion Therapy?
Inversion therapy is one of the most successful and commonly used methods by people with back pain. It is a technique during which the person is suspended upside down to stretch the spine and relieve any back pain. In other words, this therapy is based on the theory that by shifting the gravity of your body, the pressure you feel on the back will ease off while providing spine traction. Inversion therapy can also create a protective fluid around the spinal discs and it can increase blood circulation.
Types of Inversion Therapy Devices
Inversion Therapy Table
An inversion table is a device designed to help you stretch the back by standing on one. However, nowadays the newest models of inversion therapy table can allow the user to exercise on them. For instance, you can choose a model on which you can do torso rotations and ab crunches. Regardless of the inversion therapy table you choose, all of them usually come with safety straps or harnesses so you don’t slip off when on it. An important thing to have in mind is that first, you will need to try this with your physical therapist or at a clinic. A professional can show you how to lie down still and how to exercise properly.
Inversion chairs are based on a similar concept as inversion tables with the main difference being that you will need to sit.
Inversion (gravity) Boots
The gravity inversion boots are heavy-duty ankle wraps designed to work with inversion devices. Their main purpose is to make it easier for you to hang upside down.
Inversion Traction Device
This new device is portable, convenient and easy to use. It is designed for therapeutic relief of stiffness, back pain and any other types of discomfort. This device is designed to hold your shoulders and hips in the right position while offering excellent maintenance for the back and spine.
Benefits of Inversion Therapy
Improved Spinal Health
Since inversion therapy can improve the space between the spinal discs and relieve any pressure, it is considered to be effective in relieving back pain while improving spinal health. For the reason, it is also beneficial for people with scoliosis and sciatica. This therapy is not recommended for people with high blood pressure, some kind of heart disease or glaucoma. This is because when you remain in an inverted position, your heart will slow down while the blood pressure will increase, which can make your eyeballs jump dramatically.
Practising inversion therapy is also related to improved flexibility because the micro-movements in the spine can make the body stronger over some period of time. By practising this therapy, you can certainly improve your posture and you might find it easier to bend and reach things.
No Need for Surgery
A study made in 2014 shows that zero-gravity can reduce compression and potentially prevent various disabilities related to back problems. Additionally, this can reduce the need for possible spinal surgery.
Alternative Methods with Inversion Therapy Products
Except for standing or sitting on these devices, you might be able to benefit from doing certain yoga poses. Some of the poses you can do are shoulder stand, handstand, headstand and plow (halasana) pose. You should keep in mind that these poses need to be supervised by a certified yoga instructor. You can either hire a professional instructor to help you with your home workouts or you can go to a yoga class.
Risks of Inversion Therapy
Except for not being appropriate for people with cardiovascular disorders, this therapy is also not ideal for those of you who have bone and joint problems like osteoporosis, fractures, herniated disk and spinal injuries. Besides this, this therapy is also forbidden for people with ear infections, conjunctivitis (pink eye) and cerebral sclerosis. There are also some other conditions that can cause complications like pregnancy, obesity, retinal detachment and the use of blood clotting medications.
Patience is key for the beginning. Since you will be trying this therapy for the first time, it is best to start off in shorter increments. This is paramount in order to prevent side effects like muscle strain and dizziness.