Looking for the best stretches for sonographers? With how much they work, it isn’t far from typical for sonographers and ultrasound technicians to develop musculoskeletal injuries or experience work-related pain. And the areas that usually develop work-related issues include the neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hands, and the upper and lower back. The disorders can range from temporary injury to having to give up work due to the development of a permanent disability.
In this article, we will be looking at the best stretches for sonographers. If you are a sonographer looking for a solution to that incessant back pain, look no further because we are here to help.
Best Stretches for Sonographers
In general, stretching your body is always good. No matter what you do. This is especially true for sonographers. Regular stretching is an excellent way for sonographers to keep their bodies from sustaining serious injuries. But there are a few specific stretches that can help you to avoid future injury and assure you a long and healthy career. This article has compiled some valuable stretches you can perform several times a day, further promoting a long and nourishing career.
Without further ado, sonographers, get ready to stretch with the following tips.
When doing the neck tilt, you are to stand straight. After which, you lean your neck to the right as if your ear is leaning towards your shoulder. Make sure your ears don’t touch your shoulders. Hold this position for 15 seconds, and then switch sides.
When doing the Head tilts, slowly tilt your head forward from a sitting position. You must do this until the chin reaches your chest. Hold this position for 5 seconds. After that, revert back to your original position, then tilt your head backward until you look up at the ceiling. Again, hold the position for 5 seconds. It is best to perform this ten times.
Hold your right arm straight out with your elbow facing down when trying this stretch. Hold your right hand’s fingers with your left hand and pull them towards you for 15 seconds. Constantly switch sides.
To do this stretch, place the palms of your hands together with fingers pointing upward, and slowly raise your elbows upward while maintaining contact at the palms. Hold onto this position for 30 seconds.
While doing this stretch, place your arm on the doorway and rotate your torso away from the arm. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Make sure that you perform this stretch on both arms.
CROSS ARM STRETCH
To do this stretch, you must hold your elbow with the opposite hand in front of the body and slowly pull the elbow across the body until you feel a comfortable stretch. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Again, make sure you perform this stretch on both arms.
REACH FOR THE SKY STRETCH
You must do this stretch while standing or sitting straight. First, you are to extend your arms to reach up toward the ceiling on either side of your head. Your palms should be facing inwards, and as you reach your arms up, make sure you are pushing your shoulders back. Consecutively, you are to take some deep inhales and exhales while reaching as high as you can.
UPPER BACK STRETCH
While performing this stretch, you must extend your arms in front of you and turn your wrists to interlock your fingers. It is a must that when your fingers are interlocked, your palms should be facing out. Now, stretch your shoulders and arms outward, and hold the position for 15 seconds.
SIDE BACK STRETCH
You must be seated in a tall posture when performing this stretch. You are to then reach your left hand up and over your head. Then, you stretch your arm to the right, keeping your left hip down. While doing this stretch, make sure that you feel a stretch in the left side of your waist, back, and ribs.
When doing this stretch, roll your shoulders backward ten times while standing with your arms at your sides. Repeat the same thing, but this time roll your shoulders forward.
To perform this stretch, scoot to the edge of the chair and extend your leg in front of you with your toes pointed upward. After doing this, slowly lean your trunk forward until you feel a comfortable stretch. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Make sure to perform this stretch on both legs.
For this stretch, you must cross your ankle over the opposite knee. Then slowly lean your torso forward until you feel a comfortable stretch. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Make sure to perform the stretch on both legs.
SQUAT TO REACH
While performing this stretch, stand with knees slightly bent and feet flat on the floor. First, bend down to touch your toes. Then wrap your hands around your ankles and bend into a squat. While remaining in a deep squat position, raise one arm and the other towards the ceiling. Keeping your arms straight up, stand up. This stretch greatly helps in improving hip mobility while also eliminating back pain.
When performing this stretch, kneel on one knee with the lower leg lying flat behind. After which, plant the other foot flat on the ground in front, so its leg is folded at a 90-degree angle. Once you’re steady in this position, lean your hips and torso forward gently for a deeper stretch. For an even deeper stretch, raise your arms above your head. Remember to switch sides.
WALK AND DRINK WATER
In addition to performing these stretches, it is highly beneficial to try and walk around for 5 minutes every hour. Walking down the hall and back, up and down a flight or two of stairs, or even a couple of laps around your office can help you to loosen your muscles and joints because they often tend to stiffen while sitting or scanning. You are also advised to take in enough fluid to make up for the amount you lose each day.
Being a sonographer isn’t easy, and the physical strain only adds to the exhaustion. But that’s what makes being a sonographer even more rewarding. Thus, if you are a sonographer who feels burnt out but would like to keep going, we highly recommend you practice these stretches for sonographers.
If you are passionate about becoming a sonographer and taking the SPI exam, you can try our free SPI practice test to help you prepare for the exam.
Frequently Asked Questions
WHAT PERCENTAGE OF SONOGRAPHERS HAVE PAIN EVERY DAY?
Studies have shown that sonographers struggle with the physical demands of their profession daily. Because of this, sonographers have an increased risk of musculoskeletal disorders. Researchers have found that approximately 75% to 90% of sonographers report pain when they scan. So, it is important that these stretches for sonographers are implemented.
DO SONOGRAPHERS BURN OUT?
Various analyses have reported sonographers experiencing some level of burnout. The incidence of sonographer burnout was shown to be high in all studies but varied considerably across the different population settings. This is because up to 90 percent of sonographers experience work-related musculoskeletal disorders.