Inversion therapy is all the rage these days. People do it to eliminate back pain, whether it is chronic or acute, and from intense physical work or an all-day sitting job at the office.
The premise of inversion therapy lies on the reversal of the adverse effects of gravity on the spine. When a person shifts the pull of gravity by placing the chest over the head, the spine decompresses and the muscles releases stress.
However, inversion therapy (and consequently, inversion tables) does not only relieve back pain; it also improves overall physical and mental health, boosts the respiratory and circulatory systems, and aids the digestive and lymphatic systems.
In this article, we examine these different inversion table benefits and why you, in result, should invest money on one.
Inversion Table Benefits. Are They Legit?
But first, why should you use an inversion table for inversion therapy? How does it compare to its counterparts, specifically against gravity boots? The simple answer to these questions is comfort.
While gravity boots only allow a complete upside-down position during therapy, an inversion table allows the user to choose an angle setting that suits his or her preference. Most have at least three angle settings to choose from.
In addition, these devices allow for a quick and easy getaway from the inverted position. Unlike gravity boots, getting off an inversion table is as quick as rotating the equipment to an upright or horizontal position.
One of the most obvious inversion table benefits over a pair of gravity boots is that it has more features that ensure the safety and security of the user during exercise.
Some examples of these security features include handlebars, body straps and/or ankle locks that have an easy release system. Because of these features, a person does not have to worry about falling off the table and can, therefore, have a worry-free exercise that focuses only on the improvement of his or her health.
Now, here are some of the most remarkable inversion therapy and inversion table benefits that you should be aware of.
Back Pain Relief
The Newcastle University in England conducted a study wherein they observed twenty-two people who were experiencing sciatic nerve pain from a protruding disc in the spine. All of the participants were advised by their doctors to undergo back surgery.
However, during the experiment, researchers divided these subjects into two groups with one asked to undergo physical therapy and the other to undergo inversion therapy.
In the first group, seventy-eight percent of the participants still needed to have back surgery. In the second group, on the other hand, only twenty-seven percent of the participants went through with surgery.
This means that seventy-three percent of them were relieved of sciatic nerve pain due to inversion therapy.
In the same sense, inversion therapy can also cure a herniated disc. A herniated disc occurs when the soft jelly-like center between each vertebra on the spine is compressed and, in result, bulges out of the spine.
Because of this, the vertebrae rub against each other, putting pressure on the spine and resulting to pain. This problem can be solved by inversion therapy so that the spine is decompressed and the herniated disc returns to its rightful position.
Moreover, inversion therapy is also believed to correct scoliosis, especially on children. Although this claim still needs further research, preliminary studies have proven that inversion therapy can improve symptoms of scoliosis.
Improved Physical and Mental Health
Inversion therapy improves posture and flexibility if done regularly. It also helps the spine to realign and the body to recover after intense physical workout. If you do inversion therapy for ten to fifteen minutes after going to the gym, you can avoid muscle soreness and joint pain on the days following the workout.
Inversion therapy also reduces stress and improves symptoms of certain mental health problems. During inversion, glands in the brain that produce hormones (including the hypothalamus gland and the pituitary gland) are bathed in detoxified blood that contains higher levels of oxygen.
Hence, these glands are stimulated to produce hormones that combat stress. Inversion can also lower the amount of cortisol in the body, a steroid hormone that increases stress level and provokes depression and anxiety disorders in some people.
Avoid Respiratory and Circulatory Problems
Inversion therapy exercises the diaphragm and, as a result, makes breathing a lot easier, especially for those who frequently experience sinus congestion.
Inversion therapy also gives the heart time to relax. When a person is in an upside-down position, the heart does not have to work as hard as it does to circulate blood all over the body.
In fact, some people with heart arrhythmia have reported improvement in their condition. Note, however, that a doctor’s recommendation and approval are needed before a person considers inversion therapy to cure respiratory and circulatory problems.
Better Digestive and Lymphatic Systems
Inversion therapy eases indigestion as well. By inverting the body to an upside-down position, the movement of fecal matter through the ileocecal valve from the small intestine to the large intestine is more efficient and easier because it is moving with gravity instead of against it.
Moreover, inversion therapy also aids peristalsis, a series of muscle contractions that moves food in wave-like motions along the tract.
In addition, inversion therapy also helps the lymphatic system to properly release lymphatic fluids that cleanse the body of toxins.
When the body is inverted, gravity helps to draw out said lymphatic fluids; therefore, the body is able to get rid of accumulated waste. In connection to this, it can also be said that inversion therapy improves the immune system of the body.
With a more efficient lymphatic system that better detoxifies the body, the immune system is given a boost and is, hence, better at battling infections, both viral and bacterial.
In conclusion, inversion therapy and inversion tables are not only good for your back health and posture; they also help you maintain and improve your current overall health. By practicing inversion therapy regularly, you can get rid of numerous health problems that will make you feel a lot better both inside and out.