With Summer just about to begin, Amusement Parks will soon be filled with families seeking thrills, not neck pain. Check out the tips below to avoid neck pain while riding roller coasters this summer.
Why rides can cause pain
A thrilling ride seems like a lot of fun, but roller coasters can cause pain in the neck, and trauma to bones, muscles, ligaments and other soft tissues.
Bending forward, or forward flexion of the spine, along with the twisting and rotation from sudden turns, increases pressure at the back side of the disc where your spinal canal is located. These sorts of movements could lead to pain, especially if you have a history of disc problems, and could cause disc herniation.
Bending backward, or extension of the spine, puts more force on the spinal joints, which can aggravate arthritis pain.
Even some of the “tame” rides can lead to pain later, especially if you’re already tense or sore. Sudden, forceful movements can set off muscle spasms.
How to prevent, treat pain
- Stretch. Doing some stretching exercises before getting on a ride can loosen up tight muscles and might help to reduce spasms.
- Hydrate. Drinking water and staying hydrated is also important. This will keep your intervertebral discs hydrated, which may reduce the risk for pain.
If you failed to hydrate and stretch and you’re paying the price the next day, take heart.