An inversion table is a health appliance designed for those who suffer from back problems or those seeking a higher level of physical wellness. This table allows an individual to invert his or her body to relieve pressure on the vertebra. The different types of inversion table exercises include regular inversion for the spine, abdominal crunches and rocking. These exercises can improve posture and flexibility by relieving compression and elongating the vertebral discs.
The simplest inversion table exercises involve the practice of hanging upside down for 20-30 minutes. This normal exercise can actually help straighten the back and spine and improve posture. Many who suffer with lower back pain use this simple exercise to relieve tension and pain, as inversion allows gravity on the spine to be reversed. When gravity is no longer pushing down on the spine, blood flow is increased and pain and compression is relieved.
For those looking for inversion table exercises to improve the quality of the abdominal muscles, one can find that simple crunches while inverted can be extremely helpful. Instead of floor crunches, which can promote tension in the muscles of the back and neck, as well as increase compression in the spine, inversion table crunches help exercise the abdomen without creating pain in any other area of the body. Being inverted while crunching the ab muscles also creates a bigger challenge compared to floor exercises, aiding in working the muscles to a higher degree.
After performing any exercise which involves compression of the spine due to gravity's effects, such as running or jumping, some health experts recommend rocking while on the inversion table to relieve the pressure. Rocking may be the most important of the inversion table exercises to perform after a regular cardio workout to increase the lymphatic fluid between the intervertebral discs and to aid in the removal of wastes. Usually one can rock the table back and forth while being inverted, as well as from side to side. This will increase movement in the spine, as well as flexibility.
The benefits of inversion table exercises range from depression and stress reduction to posture improvement and balance. There is some speculation as to whether the improved blood flow to the brain aids in the release of feel good hormones in the brain which tend to help alleviate depressive symptoms. There are no research studies to prove this, only the experiences of those who have actually used these exercises. It is known, however, that through pain relief comes stress reduction, and inversion therapy can have a powerful effect in alleviating stressful symptoms.