Inversion Table Exercises for Back Pain and General Health Benefits

Inversion Table Exercises for Back Pain and General Health Benefits
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Have you considered trying some inversion table exercises?

Inversion tables offer a wide array of benefits for the user. Like most workout machines however, it’s crucial to practice the appropriate inversion table exercises, depending on your specific requirement or ailment.

In addition to the well-known one of helping to alleviate back pain, inversion table exercises can also have a number of other benefits.

When your body is up-side-down, your blood will circulate better. Gravity is the reason blood flows easier in this position since your heart does not have to work against it to get the blood from your lower limbs to your heart again.

Your lymphatic system also works more efficiently, which can ease the pain of stiff muscles.

Please note that inversion therapy should not be used by anyone who has any type of heart disease, high blood pressure or glaucoma. You should always speak to your doctor before using an inversion table.

Inversion Table Exercises


This is probably the most common of the inversion table exercises. An inversion sit-up is believed to be much more effective than a traditional sit-up. However, the process is basically the same.

Simply lock your ankles into place and opt for a 45 degree angle or perhaps with the table parallel to the ground. This will make it easier for you to move the upper body forward, working the abdominal muscles at the same time. Fold both arms across your chest and tuck your chin towards your sternum. Slowly flex the chest muscles and make a slight bending motion and the hips. This motion will lift the body against the force of gravity, which is like doing a sit-up with weights.

A few sets containing 10 – 20 reps on alternating days will have profound results after a few months for most people.


Stretching is one of the most basic inversion table exercises you can do and doesn’t really require much effort on the part of the user. Simply inverting the table a full 90 degrees can stretch the muscles and allow the spine to decompress.

If you want to put more challenge into the exercise however, you can always twist and turn from side to side to stretch the hip area more. For this, it’s best to have handles to steady your movement. Some people like to touch their toes while in the upside down position although this requires some expertise.

Leg Stretching

When tilted, use the handles to further stretch your leg area in order to relax the hamstring and calves. These areas of the body take a lot of beating throughout the day and stretching will help relieve any ache you might be feeling along this region. Try to focus on your spine and imagine yourself standing up straight with the chest thrown out and stomach in. This will help “push” the bones into proper position, therefore improving posture.

Added Intensity

If you want to make your workouts more interesting, you can use some weight while on an angle. Note though that this is only advisable to those who have already developed some arm muscles and simply want to improve them.

Alleviating Back Pain

Back pain is one of the most common health problems patients complain about to their physicians. The problem can be caused by various conditions, but spinal damage such as discs that are herniated or degenerated causes the most severe pain. Nerves that originate in the spinal column radiate outward to the back and limbs, and when these nerves are compressed the result can be debilitating, shooting pain.

The best inversion table exercises for back pain involve basic use of the table. All you have to do is strap yourself to the table and tilt it to 15 degrees as a starting point. Take your time as you don’t want to tilt too soon, since this can make all the blood rush to your head, causing nausea and dizziness. From here, you can try increasing the angle by 10 degrees each time until you’re comfortable with a 45 degree angle. You can attempt a full upside down position if, and when, you think you’re capable of it.

These exercises help to reduce the pain causing pressure of the vertebrae on the nerve roots when the inversion table uses the pull of gravity to gently increase space between the vertebrae.

Inversion therapy is typically recommended as only part of a program to treat mild back pain, and is not an effective treatment for chronic pain. This more severe type of back pain may require epidural injections, anti-inflammatory drugs and perhaps even surgery.

Relieving Stress

An inversion table can relieve stress as effectively as a yoga class. Full-body stretching is very relaxing, and does not require the physical effort that yoga exercises do. This also helps your joints remain healthy and flexible so your level of activity will not be diminished as you age.

Mental Alertness

Are you as mentally alert as you could or should be? If not, inversion table exercises may help because it increases the supply of blood and oxygen to your brain. In addition, using an inversion table should help you maintain your height rather than “shrinking” as most people do over the years. This is because inversion therapy helps to counteract the effects of gravity when you “turn the tables” on a regular basis.

Inversion Table Safety Tips

When performing inversion table exercises, there are several things you need to keep in mind for safety:

  • Always wear the appropriate clothes. In the case of inversion table exercises, this means well fitting clothes that let you move comfortably even when upside down. Do not opt for loose clothes since they can get in the way and block your movement when inverted.
  • Wear rubber shoes. You need a good grip on the table that also protects your feet at the same time. Never go barefoot during an inversion exercise.
  • If you’re a first time user with no idea how the table will affect you, make sure that someone else is there to watch you. Preferably someone who has used the tilt table before. They may need to act fast in case you find yourself becoming dizzy with the equipment.
  • Although being upside down has its advantages, the position can be detrimental for people with health issues. Specifically, those with hypothermia, blood clots, cardiovascular issues and the like will find the table dangerous.  Always, therefore, consult your doctor before using an inversion table.
  • Always carefully read the instructions provided with the table. Keep in mind that safety is top priority so check the straps twice before attempting any inversion angle.


The above are only a few of the many inversion therapy exercises you can perform. As a matter of fact, you can perform most traditional exercises on an inversion table and they’ll be more effective than their traditional counterpart. This is a great tool for anyone who is serious about losing weight or getting into shape.

Using an inversion table as treatment for back pain, for use in general exercising and, as a way to prevent some of the more common health problems that most people develop as they age, may be a good choice for you. However, as previously stated, if you are considering carrying out some inversion table exercises, you should always check with your doctor first and you should proceed with caution and be patient when developing your exercise regime.

Whatever you use the table for, you should always begin slowly and take at least two weeks to reach the full inversion position. Begin with about five minutes twice each day, and then gradually increase the angle and the time to allow your body to adjust to the therapy.

You can enjoy a lifetime of health benefits by carrying out inversion table exercises in the proper manner.

Why not try out a quality inversion table?

Always remember to consult with your doctor before trying an inversion table.

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