Lower back pain, sometimes known as lumbago or spondylosis, is the most common form of chronic pain among adults. This groan-inspiring ache is felt each time you stand up or bend over and never seems to go away.
While resting may seem like the best way to ease the pain in your lower back, doctors are now encouraging people to get active and move their back muscles for pain relief treatment. The exercise you perform depends on the intensity of your pain and what caused it.
Your chiropractor may recommend different types of lumbago exercises for your back pain. In addition, you may also want to try out these eight lumbago exercises at your own discretion:
Exercise #1: Hamstring Stretches
Hamstring stretches target the back of the leg where muscles that support the lower spine are located. You can do this exercise using a fitness band or towel. To perform the hamstring stretch, lie on your back as you bend one knee. Next, thread the towel or fitness band under the ball of the foot of your unbent leg.
Pull back the towel slowly, keeping your knee straight throughout the exercise. You will feel a gentle stretch at the back of the leg. Hold the stretch for 15 to 30 seconds, and repeat five times for each leg.
Exercise #2: Press-up Back Extensions
Press-up back extensions are great top lumbago exercises that you should try to alleviate back pain. To perform the press-up back extension, start by lying on your stomach and then position your hands directly under your shoulders.
Next, push down on your hands to lift your shoulders away from the floor. If you’re able to perform this task comfortably, place your elbows directly under your shoulders and spend several seconds holding the position.
Exercise #3: Wall Sits
Wall sits are ideal for easing lower back pain. To perform this exercise properly and avoid injury, start by standing at a distance of 10 to 12 inches from the wall with your back facing it.
Next, lean onto the wall carefully until your spine is flat. Now, slide down the wall until your knees are slightly bent, and continue pressing your lower back into the wall. Hold the position for 10 seconds, then slide back up the wall. Perform 8 to 12 reps.
Exercise #4: Knee to Chest
The knee-to-chest exercise gets your legs pumping and is a treatment for lower back pain symptoms. To perform it, lie on your back and place your feet flat on the floor while bending your knees. Next, draw your left knee to your chest, and keep the right foot flat against the floor.
Hold the position for 15 to 30 seconds while ensuring your lower back stays flat on the floor. Lower the left knee and repeat the motion with the right leg. Perform this exercise two to four times on each leg.
Exercise #5: Bird Dog
This fitness routine is ideal for easing lower back pain. It stabilizes the lower back during the movements of the legs and arms. To perform the bird dog, begin by getting on your hands and knees. Next, tighten your abdominal muscles, then lift and extend one leg behind you while maintaining your hips level. Hold the position for 5 seconds and then switch to the other leg. Repeat this motion eight to 12 times for each leg.
If you’re up for a challenge, progressively lengthen the duration of the lifts. With each repetition, try extending the opposite arm in front of you. Make sure your lower back muscles don’t sag at any point during the exercise.
Exercise #6: Glute Bridges
This exercise strengthens the abdomen, hips, glutes, hamstrings, transverse abdominis and the lower back. To perform this exercise, lie on your back with your knees bent and your heels flat on the floor. Next, dig your heels into the floor while squeezing down on your glutes.
To engage the exercise fully, lift your hips to form a single straight line with your hips, shoulders, and knees. Hold the position for at least six seconds, then slowly lower your hips back to the floor. Rest for about 10 seconds and repeat the motion eight to twelve times.
Exercise #7: Pelvic Tilts
This exercise aims at strengthening the pelvis, which works together with the muscles along your spine. Ensuring your abdomen can pull its fair share relieves pressure on the spine. To perform pelvic tilts, lie with your back on the floor. Keep your knees bent while ensuring your feet stay flat on the floor.
Next, pull in your stomach like you are trying to bring your belly button towards your backbone; this will keep your stomach tight. When doing this, your hips will rock back as your spine presses into the floor. Hold this motion for 10 seconds, and repeat the exercise eight to twelve times.
Exercise #8: Aerobic Exercises
Aerobic exercises strengthen the whole cardiovascular system. Aerobics include walking, swimming, biking and exercises that elevate your heart rate and get you moving. If you’re just starting out, try a short session, then gradually lengthen them as your stamina improves. Because back pain often requires special care, swimming helps as the water supports body weight and gives your back a break. Avoid strokes that require you to twist your body.
Although movement is beneficial for relieving back pain, proper form is essential. Avoid exercises that put too much strain and stress on the back.