Inversion therapy is the best ways of dealing with back pain. Members of the Healthy4Life team use an inversion table several times a week. It helps our alignment, and feels great. However, this is not a piece of equipment you just jump on. Always use precaution, and continue reading if you have concerns before you use.
There are numerous benefits to using inversion therapy, including stress relief, improved blood circulation and spine alignment. Which brings us to a very important question – what precautions should you take before using?
1. Talk to your doctor / chiropractor
This one is obvious. We have spoken to several chiropractors, and surprisingly to us (at first), they thought it was a good idea. Keep in mind, we are healthy without serious issues. However, as beneficial as inversion is, there is the risk of creating a large problem than the one you are trying to solve.
When in a inverted position, you relieve most of your internal organs of gravitational pull. Your heart beat slows and your blood pressure increases. While this can be good for a someone in good health, it can be problematic for a hypertension patient, pregnant woman, or if you are obese.
Even though inversion relieves pressure from your lower extremities, your head becomes the victim of extra blood pressure. This could also create problems for your eyes and ears. These are rare, but they do happen.
2. Pick a good inversion table
When it comes to inversion tables, good is always relative. Two people will have different needs, so whats good for one is not good for another. Its important the table is safe, sturdy and operates well. It is relatively easy to get back in an upright position from an inverted position on a good table if you set it up properly for you. Remember, you are upside down, so you want to be locked in on a solid table.Find one that fits your body, your height, and your weight. Remember, you do not have to invert completely upside down to get relief. 20 degrees past horizontal works amazing well.
3. How long inverted is long enough
After reading on the numerous health benefits, it is easy to be over zealous and want to flip on the table for at extended periods of time. However,you need to know exactly how much time is safe for you to stay inverted. Beginners are advised against using the inversion table for more than 3-5 minutes a day. Build up slowly, We find that using it for shorter times but multiple times a day is better than one long inversion. We typically feel corrections shortly after initial inversion, followed by decompression of the hips (feels wonderful, btw), but all of this happens in under 1 minute. So using it for 1-2 min in the morning, and 1-2 min in the evenings in better than one 5 min session. Its great after long trips or extended periods of sitting too!