Keep moving for improving your back pain

When you’re in constant pain, it might feel like the right thing to do is to lie down and get some rest. When it comes to back pain, this is the last thing you want to be doing. Keeping still will stiffen up muscles but exercises for lower back pain can strengthen back, stomach, and leg muscles. They help support your spine, relieving back pain. Always ask your health care professional before doing any exercise for back pain. Here we take a look at exercises that are great for back pain and a few to avoid. For a Leicester Osteopath, visit Townosteo a Leicester Osteopath

Do try these:

Partial Crunches

Partial crunches can help strengthen your back and stomach muscles so you need to lie with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Cross your arms over your chest or put hands behind your neck. Tighten stomach muscles and raise your shoulders off the floor.  Breathe out as you raise your shoulders. Don’t lead with your elbows or use arms to pull your neck off the floor. Hold for a second, then slowly lower back down. Repeat 8 to 12 times. Proper form prevents excessive stress on your low back. Your feet, tailbone, and lower back should remain in contact with the floor at all times.

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Hamstring Stretches

Lie on your back, keeping one knee bent. Loop a towel under the ball of your foot. Straighten your knee and slowly pull back on the towel. You should feel a gentle stretch down the back of your leg. Hold for at least 15 to 30 seconds and complete 2 to 4 times for each leg.

Press-up Back Extensions

Lying on your stomach, place your hands under your shoulders. Push with your hands so your shoulders begin to lift off the floor. If it’s comfortable for you, put your elbows on the floor directly under your shoulders and hold this position for several seconds.

Wall Sits

Stand about 10 to 12 inches from the wall with your back facing the wall, then lean back until your back is flat against the wall. Slowly slide down until your knees are slightly bent, pressing your lower back into the wall. Hold for a count of 10, then carefully slide back up the wall – repeating 8 to 12 times.

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Knee to Chest

Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Bring one knee to your chest, keeping the other foot flat on the floor. Keep your lower back pressed to the floor, and hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Then lower your knee and repeat with the other leg. Repeat this 2 to 4 times for each leg.

Exercises to avoid:

Toe Touches

Not all exercise is beneficial for lower back pain. Standing toe touches put a great deal of strain on the disks and ligaments in your spine and overstretch lower back muscles and hamstrings.

Leg Lifts

Leg lifts can be suggested as an effective means of strengthening the core or abdominal muscles and while strength is crucial in helping to relieve pain, lifting both legs at the same time puts an enormous amount of pressure on your core. If weak, this exercise can make back pain worse so it’s far better to adjust the exercise and try lying on your back with one leg straight and the other leg bent at the knee. Keeping your lower back flat on floor. Slowly lift the straight leg up about 6 inches and hold briefly. Lower leg slowly and repeat 10 times, then change legs.