Everyone, at least once in their life, had to deal with lower back pain. Sometimes the pain is quickly resolved, other times it is chronic or reappears when least expected. Whatever the extent and frequency of the disorder, lower back pain must be considered as a signal sent by the body to indicate that something at the level of the spine is not working properly. Read this article to find out the best exercises to cope with it.
Lower back pain: causes and preventions
Determining the real causes of lower back pain is very difficult even for a doctor who uses sophisticated diagnostic techniques. Usually, there are no important lesions. There are simple alterations of the structures composing the vertebral column. For this reason, about 9 cases of lower back pain out of 10 resolve positively within a month.
Lower back pain is more frequent in particular categories of subjects. Thanks to this observation and the help of anatomical and physiological knowledge, a series of elements predisposing the individual to back pain can be established. Most of the major risk factors are related to the subject’s life habits, while genetic predispositions are quite rare. Strategies for the treatment and prevention of lower back pain must be based on reducing the stress on the spine and on strengthening the structures that support it.
To improve the health of our back, it is recommended to:
- Practice regular physical activity (exercises of toning, stretching associated with moderate aerobic activity);
- Maintain normal body weight;
- Avoid smoking and alcohol;
- Enjoy relaxing breaks, avoiding as much as possible stress;
- In case of lower back pain, avoid excessive rest, trying to make movements appropriate to the level of the trauma.
First thing to know for lower back pain
The first exercise to fight lower back pain is to listen to common sense by consulting a doctor before starting your workouts. This is not routine advice, but a real recommendation, to ensure that there are no contraindications to sports practice.
If you approach these exercises for the first time, it is better to consider the idea of relying on a qualified personal trainer, so that they can follow you.
The exercises proposed in this article are general indications useful only for cases of lower back pain due to weaknesses or excessive muscle contractions. If your lower back pain is a consequence of herniated discs, protrusions, or other problems with intervertebral discs, it is essential to contact a medical expert and follow their instructions.
What are the best exercises for lower back pain?
Movement plays a key role in the prevention and treatment of lower back pain. Often, those who follow a specific program to improve back health do not give proper importance to stretching exercises. This is due to the fact that these stretching exercises constitute the final part of the workout, resulting, erroneously, physical activity of the session of secondary importance.
The role of these exercises is fundamental to prevent lower back pain. It is important to regain lost elasticity without limiting attention to the improvement of muscle strength. This type of exercise allows you to relieve tension and improve the elasticity of the paravertebral and lumbar muscles. Especially in the first period, when inflammation and lower back pain have not yet completely resolved, physical activity should be based almost exclusively on exercises of discharge and decompression of the spine.
Here are some exercises for you that do not need special equipment and can be performed both at the gym and at home:
- Lie down on the ground, in a supine position. Bring your knees to your chest as close as possible with the help of your arms. Hold the position for 20 seconds, relax for a few seconds and repeat twice more.
- On the ground, on all fours. Exhale bending the spine upwards until the lungs are completely emptied. Inspiring, slowly return to the starting position by flattening the back. Repeat 5 times.
- Sit on a chair with legs apart. Exhale and bend the torso forward. Inspiring, slowly return to the starting position. Repeat 5 times.
- Kneel on the ground, with the glutes resting on the heels. Exhale and bring your arms forward keeping your basin in the starting position. Inspiring, slowly return to the starting position. Repeat by stretching arms first to the right and then to the left.
- Sit on the ground, stretch one leg and flex the other to bring the sole in contact with the inside of the thigh extended. Extend both arms and torso forward to bring your fingers closer to the toe. Keep the position for about 20 seconds, then slowly return to the starting position and repeat for the other side.
- Sit down, one leg stretched out, the other crossed over on the first. With the elbow of the opposite side, push the bent leg inwards by rotating the torso and head in the opposite direction. Hold the position for 15-20 seconds and repeat for the opposite side.
- Standing or sitting, slowly flex the neck side. With the hand of the side to which the neck is bent, grab the wrist of the opposite arm; pull it slightly downwards to tension the muscles of the trapezium, and shoulder against each other. Hold the position for 20-30 seconds and change sides.
- Always warm-up before starting the stretching exercises;
- Wear comfortable clothing that does not prevent movements;
- Choose a relaxing atmosphere and respect the correct breathing technique;
- Avoid sudden movements and excessive stretches.
Enjoy the exercises! If you want to combine exercises with a balanced diet, book your nutritional consultation.Get in touch with our knowledgeable nutritionists for free.