Back pain is a common ailment among adults young and old. There are various causes for back pain such as being overweight, heavy lifting or poor posture. It is important to recognize the cause of your back pain in order to determine which exercises are appropriate for your condition. The best way of easing back pain with exercise is to strengthen your core and increase flexibility in your back. Here are a couple of ideas that can help with easing back pain.
It sounds simple and you are probably thinking, “I walk everyday all the time.” Well, we are talking in terms of walking with a purpose. Practice good posture and deep breathing while you are walking. Bend your arms and swing them as you do while running but focus on not twisting your back through your stride. Also, some people find comfort in pool walking. The resistance of the water works to strengthen the back muscles. This is a good exercise to warm up with.
Sitting at a desk for long hours or poor posture can cause stiffness to develop along the spinal cord. In order to reduce pain, the muscles along the spinal cord must again become flexible. With the “Lying Rotation” stretch, you lie on your back, bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor. While breathing deeply, slowly move your knees left and right. This should be a painless exercise. The exercise “Extension” is done by lying on your stomach and propping yourself onto your forearms, then slowly and carefully moving up on your palms as far as possible. Hold this position for ten seconds then ease yourself back down. Repeat three times. This is a major back stretch and may require practice before completing the full motion. The stretch “Knees to Chest” is exactly how it sounds; like on your back with your knees bent and slowly pull both knees to your chest until you feel a stretch in your back. Hold that position initially for five seconds, and then gradually increase holding time.
It is very important during these exercises to focus on not making sudden twisting movements or stretching to the point of pain. Recognize the difference between pain and the feeling of working through inflexibility.
Finally one of the best ways to ease back pain with exercise is to complete specific workouts that focus on strengthening your back muscles. Weakness or muscle fatigue can occur in the back muscles and are results of being overweight or having poor posture. Both of those issues can be resolved with proper strength training. A good exercise to begin with is the “Plank.” To complete this exercise, you must lie on your stomach and lift yourself up on your forearms. This position is similar to the pushup position but on your forearms. Hold this position for as long as possible. While holding this position, focus on tightening your abs, keeping your back straight and squeezing your gluteus maximus. The first few times completing this exercise may be challenging, but after a week or two of regular practice, holding the position will become easier.
An exercise ball is an excellent tool to use while doing back training because it requires core strength and stability. There are many exercises you can complete with an exercise ball such as partial crunches, planks and chest presses. The key to using an exercise ball efficiently is to focus on maintaining technique and properly going through the motions.
The back is one of the most used muscles in the body and to ease back pains with exercise, it is essential that proper technique is done so that muscle can develop to support your body.