No matter what line of work you’re in, you’ve probably experienced some pain in your lower back. Considered one of the most common ailments — do you know that it affects 80% of Canadians at least once in their lifetime? — lower back pain is caused by all sorts of factors including overuse, aging, arthritis and compression.
Most people will experience lower back pain at some point in their life, it is very common. In the old days bed rest was prescribed if your back was ‘playing-up’, whereas today it is recommended to keep exercising. Of course the exercises you do have to be appropriate, we are not suggesting to go for a run or lift heavy weights, that would be stupid.
Lower Tummy Strengthening
It is important to strengthen your lower tummy muscles because these muscles work in partnership with the lower back. This means if the lower tummy muscles are weak the lower back can tighten up, which can lead to lower back pain.
A great exercise for the lower tummy muscles is shown in the image below. It is extremely gentle and also very effective. Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
Breathe in and as you breathe out bring one knee in towards your chest and as you breathe in return the foot to the floor. Repeat this exercise six to eight times on each leg.
Mobilising your lower back is important to aid it’s recovery. The bird dog exercise is shown in the image below and is great for mobilising the lower back.
- To carry out this exercise get onto all fours, make sure your hands are directly under your shoulders, and knees directly under your hips. Your spine is in a neutral position and you need to keep your head in line with your spine.
- Take a deep breath in and as you breathe out extend one leg and the opposite arm to inline with your spine. You need to keep your spine in a neutral position at all times, so don’t let your lower back sag down.
- Hold for 5-10 seconds and as you breathe out lower both your leg and arm to the ground. Repeat this exercise eight to twelve times alternating sides.
Lower Back Stretch
Stretching your lower back is going to be really helpful in alleviating your lower back pain. Kneel on all fours, with your knees directly under your hips and hands directly under your shoulders. Ensure your spine is in a neutral position.
- Keep your head in line with your spine, your shoulders back and avoid locking your elbows.
- Take a big deep breath in and as you breathe out slowly take your bottom backwards towards your heels. Hold the stretch for 20-30 seconds.
- As you breathe in bring your body up onto all fours again. Repeat six to eight times.
Here’s the simple guidance to reduce your lower backpain. Here’s to your better body posture!
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