Exercises for Back Pain

Back pain can be as a result of weakness or tightness of your hamstrings, hips, quads and gluteus. It is important to work on flexibility and strength on your kinetic chain because straining the spine and spine muscles can lead to spasm. Exercise eases severity and recurrent of back pain in the future. If you need to fix that dire pain in your back, try some of these simple holistic exercises to boost your strength.
Stretches

Sphinx
Position yourself flat on your belly and use your forearms to prop yourself up. Ensure elbows are placed approximately 90 degrees under the shoulders. Firmly press through the palm of your hands and ends of your feet using minimum force while making sure the pubic bone is pressed forward. Do this for 1to 3 minutes unless feelings of discomfort arise.

 

Hamstring stretch
Lie on your back with your lower back and hips leveled on the floor. Extend one leg and bend the other toward the position of your chest. Slowly, push forward the raised knee to position the sole of your foot toward the ceiling. Gently pull your leg in your direction with your hands to the point where you start experiencing slight discomfort.
Hold your breath for 10 to 40 seconds before shifting to the other leg.

Sole or double knee to chest
Extend both legs on the surface while lying on your back. With one of the legs extended, placing your knee on your chest. Hold for 10-25 seconds. Comfortably tug the leg closer to the chest. There effects should be felt on the lower abdomen.
This can also be effective when you pull both legs simultaneously towards your chest and bring your forehead to your knees and hold for approximately 10 minutes.

Bridge
Bend your knees and place the feet a hip distance while lying on your back. Breathe in and lift your hips from the floor till the shoulders, hips and knees are placed vertically when breathing out. Breathe in again and lower the hips on the floor. This should be repeated close to 10 or 14 times.

Spine stretch
Place a cushion beneath your head and lie with your back on the floor. With arms stretched out on the sides, place your legs in front of you with knees together and bent. Relax your upper body and breathe deeply. In this position, roll both knees to the side then the pelvis with your shoulders and upper body flat on the surface. Breathe deeply and then before rolling your knees, return to the start position. Repeat this 8-10 times

 

Aerobics

It is the most effective exercise in reducing and eliminating back pains. Some of the exercise of aerobics includes walking, water therapy and stationary cycling.
Types of aerobic exercises :

  • Exercise walking
    The difference between exercise walking and every day walking is that the individual is faster and aims to gently work muscles and elevate the heart rate. Exercise walking is more preferable to jogging because it is gentler and does not require any special form of equipment and is readily available. It is important to wear wrist weights and ankles to add resistance.
    Benefits of exercise walking
    Exercise walking is a way of benefiting from regular daily exercise without triggering back pains. These health benefits include:
    Nourishment of spinal structures- walking as a means of exercise creates a strong circulation and pumps nutrients into draining toxins and soft tissues.
    Flexibility and posture is improved: regular stretching and walking aids in increasing motion, helps prevent sloppy movement and protects from injury such as falling.
    Strengthens feet, hips, legs and torso muscles: Stability of the spine is increased and muscles are conditioned to keep the body in an upright position.
    Strengthens bones and reduces bone density loss: walking prevents osteoporosis and helps reduce occurrence of osteoarthritis.
    Techniques for exercise walking
    Walk fast and ensure to hold enough breath to carry out a conversation.
    Begin with a 5 minute walk then increase your pace two miles in 30 minutes thrice or more times in a week.
    Ensure to sustain a good posture while walking to protect the back from injuries and get maximum outcome.
    Choose a suitable shoe comfortable for walking.
    This type of aerobic can be done indoors on a treadmill or outdoors. This makes it diverse and offers a fast pain relief. Treadmills stimulate movements such as running, walking up stairs and jogging. This provides a low-impact aerobic workout. A treadmill has pedals suspended above the surface. They glide dup and down to ensure feet does not hit hard ground which could lead to more pain and accidents. Some of these machines have resistance to strengthen muscles.
  • Stationary bicycling

Stationary bicycle is an easy to use machine that provides comfort and good aerobic exercises with negligible effect on the spine.
The stationary bicycle imitates the cycling mechanism of a normal bicycle giving you that aerobic exercise without the bumping impact and hustle of riding a bicycle on uneven ground.
Stationary bicycle is usually a perfect equip used in training beginners and experienced cyclers but it can be also used in various workout options. The stationary bike comes two types of models; the upright model and the recumbent model.
The Upright exercise bikes
The upright model involves leaning forward allowing for a multiple movements allowing exercise of more muscle groups as the biker changes position. The position options include standing and riding positions.
The forward leaning position provided by the bike is friendly and comfortable for patients with osteoarthritis and spinal stenosis conditions. It reduces possibility of more back pains while strengthening leg, abdominal and back muscles.
The Recumbent exercise bikes
The recumbent model offers lounged adjustable positions that make available back support. The bike also has a backrest that provides balance. The back support and room for reclining position provides comfort for users suffering with low back pains and degenerative disc disease.
Advantages of using the stationary exercise bike:
The two models provide options for users to choose which one suit them best in terms of comfort-ability and level of recovery.
The bikes require little maintenance.
Pedaling is not a difficult exercise and it can be learnt quickly.
The bikes provide no/low impact exercise routines reducing the risk of strain and injury.
It can be added to various workout routines.

  • Water Therapy Exercises
    Water therapy exercise has a wide range of conditioning such as swimming, spa therapy and floating or standing pool exercises that purpose to reduce neck or back pains and prevent it from future occurrence. These exercises are usually customized in order to suit different special conditions.
    The exercises can be as simple as doing easy routines in a shallow pool and as complex as training using underwater treadmills or with other high-tech devices. The routines also aim to strengthen muscles.
    There are various techniques used in exercising in a pool that vary with the degree of difficulties. These exercises and treatments include:
  • Water leg raise exercise
    This routine involves holding one side of the pool with one hand while having one leg slightly bent and another on stretched out in front. This stretching and strengthening exercises works on muscles in the leg, hip and lower back.
  • Knee-to-chest exercise
    The exercise involves standing on one leg with the other leg bent at the knee and raised towards the chest while holding the side of the pool with one hand. It also works in stretching and strengthening muscles of the lower back, hip and leg.
  • Wall-facing leg stretch exercise
    In this exercise, one mimics a “Superhero” position where your legs and body are stretched out into the water and with your relaxing at the side of the pool. This exercise extends your back while stretching your muscle shoulders.
  • Pool walking exercise
    This routine involves walking frontward and backward in a chest-high water pool. This routine is important for folks with arthritis in their knee and leg joints as it pose no impact in them while working on leg muscles.
  • Quadruped activity and exercise
    This is done while floating freely on your back. A therapist can support your abdomen or you can use a floating jacket to achieve that. While floating freely, you can then paddle with your arms and legs.
    Spa treatments
    This treatment supplements water therapy involving resting in warm water or agitated water. The hydrotherapy treatment aims at relaxing your muscles, increase muscle blood flow and general blood circulation. This makes the body more flexible and prepared for land-based exercises or other water therapy.
  • Benefits of Exercising in Water
    Exercising in water is a good therapy for people suffering from osteoarthritis, muscle tears or strain and advanced osteoporosis.
    It is helpful in scenarios where land-based routines are not possible because of decreased bone density, disability, intense pain or other factors.
    Also, water has physical properties that make it a favorable medium in treating back pains and other muscle injuries. Some of these properties include buoyancy, viscosity and hydrostatic pressure; that ease lifting of limbs, provide balance and improve muscle flexibility with increased blood flow.
  • Strengthening exercises
    Planks
    In this type of pain relief exercise, you are required to get into a pushup position and ensure your elbows are bent and your forearms support your strength. Vertically place your body from shoulders to ankles. Engage your core by squeezing gluteus for approximately 1 minute. You can roll on one side with your body still held above the floor from head to foot for a minute. You can switch the plank on the other side.
    Back extensions
    Station your body in a back extension position with your feet hooked under the leg anchors. With your back arched naturally, Place hands across the chest and lower a little bit the upper body part making sure that you are comfortable as much as possible. Squeeze the gluteus and elevate your torso till it’s lined with the lower part of the body. Pause, and slowly lower your torso to the start position.
    Swiss ball pikes

Using a Swiss ball, relax your shins on top of it and with your hands flat on the surface, use them to support your upper body. Ensure your shoulders are slightly apart and arms straight. Form a vertical line with your body from head to knees. Do not bend knees. Raise your hips high enough in order to roll the ball toward the chest. Lower hips while rolling the ball. Start over. If the exercise becomes impossible, start over with knee tucks and pull the ball towards your chest without raising hips.
Reverse hip raise
Using a bench, lie face down with the torso on the bench and hips should not be on top. With legs almost straight, lift till they are aligned with the torso. Squeeze gluteus, raise hips, pause then restart the exercise. Do up to 4 of 20 sets. This can also be done by use of a Swiss ball, hands in front of you while lying flat on the floor for support.
Hip Raises

With your knees bent and your feet flat on the surface, lie on your back. Squeeze the gluteus with your hips raised until you are vertically positioned from shoulder to knees. You can rest for 5 seconds and lower to a starting position. Work on 5 to 20 sets.

Cobra

Place legs vertically behind you and ensure arms are straight on your sides and palms down lying face down. Contract gluteus and lower back your muscles with your head, chest, legs and arms raised from the floor. Point your thumbs toward the ceiling with arms rotated. Take a 25 seconds pause and relax back on the floor. Repeat this as much as you can.

Weight Lifting

Weight lifting is mostly thought of as a body building exercise where you can gain mass and bulk up your muscles. But the point of weight lifting in reducing back pain is rather to develop back strength and body strength in general.
The back has muscles, ligaments and tendons that support your spine and keep it moving as it’s supposed to. Back muscles that are strong and healthy are usually associated with good posture and are less likely to be cause back pains. Folks with weak abdominal and back muscles are doomed to be affected by back pains sooner or later. Thus, it is essential to indulge in exercises such as weight lifting to reduce chances of being terrorized by back pains.
Strengthening your muscles (back, abdominal and even leg muscles) can also help you undertake everyday activities that involve bending and lifting easily. This will greatly minimize the chances of you having back pains. There are other benefits one can get by participating in regular and friendly weight lifting exercise. They include:
Decline in the possibility of future back injuries
Increased muscle tone
Increased knowledge of your body mechanism
Stabilization of your spine
Help in development of bone
Starting off weight lifting exercise can be a bit confusing. It is not as easy as getting into the gym and picking the heaviest weight and start lifting it. A proper weight lifting exercise involves consultation with a trainer or a physical therapist who will guide you through specific strengthening and weight lifting routines for the purpose of reinforcing good back health and reducing back pain.
For fast results, you will need use weights and other exercise machines together with a beginning routine of a strengthening exercise such as push-up. Below are some of the key weight lifting exercises that can strengthen your back and relieve back pains. Your doctor should first advice you on how to go about those exercises. It is always important to listen to your body, avoid straining your body when lifting weights and halt once you experience muscle pains.
Lateral raises
This routine strengthens your entire back. It is a simple routine that only require dumbbells only.
The weight lifting procedure begins with you placing your feet apart, hip-distance apart, with your arms at your side each holding a dumbbell
Slightly bend your elbows and begin raising your arms to the side. Keep your core intact during the movement.
Raise your arms till they reach the shoulder height and then slowly lower them. Repeat the movement.
You can continue doing this routine 3-15 times a week.
Chest flies
This is an effective muscle building exercise that concentrates on the upper chest and upper back. It requires a set of dumbbells or machines specifically for the upper body.
To begin this routine, lie facing up on the floor with your knees bent allowing your feet to stay in a flat position.
Spread your arms out on either side of your body letting them lie with each hand holding a dumbbell.
Raise each arm to meet at the top of your chest simultaneously while maintaining a minor bent of your elbows.
Then slowly move your arms back down, and repeat.
Continue doing this routine 3-15 times a week.
Push-up

This is a strengthening exercise that you can begin with before commencing the weight lifting exercise. It only needs your body which will act as a resistance. It works to strengthen your arms, chest, core and back muscles.
To begin with this routine, place your body in a straight line position from head to toe as you look down towards the ground
Spread your hands apart, shoulder-distance apart. They should also be a few inches under your shoulders.
With your back straight and balancing on your hands and toes, lower your entire body slowly to the ground while bending your elbow to a 90-degree angle.
Thrust back up with the strength of your chest, arms and upper back muscles.
Continue doing with the routine preferably 10 push-ups under 3 sets.
When doing weight lifting exercises, it is important in practicing the following;
Lift weights slowly to gradually build up and adapt to lifting heavier weights and performing complex movement.
Breathe naturally; avoid holding your breath as it tenses the muscles.
Halt as soon as you begin experiencing pain and check with your doctor.
Do the exercises correctly. Incorrect weight lifting exercises will always lead to more back pains. Consult your doctor on progressive movements especially when you want to add more weights to your routine.
Benefits of Exercise
Experts consider resting for a long period of time as an enemy of progress in reducing back pain. They rather highly recommend exercising to stretch and strengthen muscles in order to reduce the back pain and prevent future occurrence.
Doing exercise in a tailored, regulated and progressive manner has shown to relieve back pain and offer more benefits such as;
It alleviates back pain rehabilitating the spine.
Strengthen muscles supporting the spine and consequently eliminating pressure acting on spinal facet joints and discs.
Improves mobility by lessening stiffness
Improves blood circulation fastening distribution of nutrients to muscles
Releases endorphins that naturally reduce pain and depressive symptoms
Yes, exercise can control back pain. Integration of correct aerobic, stretching, weight lifting and strengthening exercises can help reduce back pain significantly and eliminate chances of it occurring in the future. Inactivity, prolonged sleep and sitting should be avoided.

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