Gentle Spine Range of Motion exercise (Cat-Cow/Camel)

This exercise should be performed through a comfortable/gentle range of motion (not to pain or eliciting any spreading sensation down arms or legs).  The discs that are between each of the bones in your spine are the fullest of fluid after lying down for a few hours, so if you do this exercise right after getting out of bed use extra gentleness – only small movements in each direction.

Being on hands and knees with the spine horizontal is the position where the spine has the least amount of compression because gravity is not pushing the weight of your head onto the rest of your spine.  It does take some neck extension strength to hold your head.

Don’t aim for a position target, move slowly and gently stopping when there is a sensation of gentle tension. The picture is exaggerated to let you see the direction of movement. Check which position when you hold it for a few seconds feels like it’s making you looser and more relaxed. Start and finish with that position. Repeat slowly approximately 5-6x holding each position for a couple of breaths in and out before going the opposite direction.