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How Your riding is effected

report degenerative changes of the discs, or wear and tear. This is a natural change as you age and the water content of the discs reduces from the eighty percent that you are born with.

If a disc is compressed too much on one side—by trauma or muscle tension—the gel is forced out to the other side (imagine what would happen if you filled a balloon with water and then squeezed it on one side). This pushes part of the disc out of its normal position and into the space occupied by the nerves—a slipped disc—resulting in very painful conditions such as sciatica and nerve pain in your arms. When seeking treatment for disc problems, it is important to remember that even though your pain may be on one side, the cause is probably on the other side. Relieve the compression and the disc will have space to come back into its rightful position, as long as it has not completely ruptured or displaced too much.

How to help yourself

Psoas release with ball

Lie on your stomach on the floor. On whichever side of your lower back feels the loosest, locate the bone at the front of your pelvis. Don’t worry 

if you are not sure which side to start with, you will not do any damage by doing your tighter side first. Place the tennis ball up from the bone and toward your belly button. Lie face down on the ball for ten minutes, or as long as is comfortable. Repeat on the other side.

This release can also be done on a bed, but put a book under the ball so that it doesn’t disappear into the mattress. Use pillows to keep your neck comfortable. Stop if any symptoms get worse.

Do not do this release if you are pregnant, think you might be pregnant, or have had recent abdominal surgery.

Spine release with foam roller

For the best results, this should be done regularly and you should aim to spend twenty to thirty minutes on it each time. If you feel this exercise is making any symptoms worse, stop.

Choose an area of floor with enough space for you to lie with your arms and legs spread out, and place the roller in the middle.

Sit on the edge of the roller and lower yourself down so your spine is along the length of it, with your head well supported. Keep your knees bent…