Hello and welcome everyone to another episode of Fey Fitness. Today’s exercise video showcases the Side Bend exercise for the versatility it offers both people with low back pain, or those of us with Atrial Fibrillation.
This exercise is perfect for people like me who have been moving furniture and heavy boxes because it stretches the spine and oblique muscles. This stress can help the body move back into alignment, or at least close enough in alignment until you can see your chiropractor again!
If you live with AFib, also like me, then this exercise is perfect because it does not cause your heart rate to spike like a sit up or crunch might. It is low intensity enough to keep your heart happy, but strong enough to still give your core a workout.
A Side Bend is an easy exercise that encompasses a few simple steps:
- Stand straight and tall with your shoulders back.
- Raise your right arm above your head so your bicep is closest to your right ear.
- Keep your left arm relaxed by your side.
- Now, bend your upper body to the left so your left arm slides down along your left thigh and keep your right arm straight with the bicep staying by your ear.
- Pro Tip 1: If you are doing this for a bad back, hold this position until you feel your oblique muscles or your lower back start to relax. Then repeat on the other side. Continue switching and holding this position on your left and right side until you start to feel low back relief (generally in about 3-5 reps).
- Pro Tip 2: If you have atrial fibrillation and are doing this as a part of your core workout, keep your core muscles tight as you lean to the left. Then, as you return to center, tighten your muscles as much as you can to really work the core as much as possible.
- Next, return to center and repeat this motion on the other side with your left arm by your left ear and your right arm along your thigh.
- Repeat this as a core exercise 15 times for 3 sets, and 3-5 times as a low back stretch.
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