3 Exercises For Lower Back Pain Relief
By Dr. Todd P. Sullivan
In order to relieve lower back pain, exercises and stretches are an important component of any treatment plan. Certain exercises can also prevent lower back pain, and future injuries from occurring. Patients with lower back pain need to strengthen weak muscles and lengthen tight muscles and fascia in the lower back. Research has shown that with patients with lower back pain should not perform sit-up exercises because it can put additional stress on the lower back causing more damage. There are three exercises that have shown to reduce lower back pain and strengthen the muscles in your lower back.
The first stretching exercise is called cat/camel. To perform this exercise you will get on your hands and knees. Once on your hands and knees you will arch your middle back like a cat arching their back and curl you head forward looking down at the ground. Once in the cat position hold this position for a count of five seconds. Next, you are going to flatten your middle back, looking up with your head and arch your lower back like a camel. Once in the camel position hold this position for a count of five seconds. Repeat both motions three times for a total of thirty seconds. Perform this exercise twice per day.
The second strengthening exercise is called "bird dog." To perform this exercise again you start on your hands and knees. Once on you are on your hands and knees, the first step is to tighten you abdominals. To do this suck your navel toward to your spine and brace your abdominals as if you were about to get punched in your stomach. You should be able to hold this contracted position and be able to breathe normally. Once your abdominals are tight, then you are going to extend your right arm straight out and at the same time extend your left leg straight out. Your arm and leg should be as straight as possible, all while maintaining a contracted abdominal core. While in this position hold for a count of five seconds and then return to start position. Next you will extend your left arm out straight and extend your right leg straight out. Hold this position for a count of five seconds. Repeat these two positions, six times total.
The third lower back strengthening exercise is called a "side plank." To perform a side plank you will start out laying on the floor on your right side resting your body weight on your right forearm keeping your torso, pelvis, and legs in a straight line. Next, you are going to suck your navel towards your spine, contracting your abdominals, while still being able to breathe normal. With your abdominal contracted you are going to push up into the plank position resting your body weight on your right forearm and having your torso, pelvis and knees of the ground in a straight position. Your forearm and lower leg and feet should be the only area contacting the ground. Once in the plank position you will hold this position for 30 seconds. Next, switch sides so that you are starting on your left side and repeat the same plank procedure on the left side. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Perform this exercise for a total of two sets on both the right and left sides.
Perform these exercises three to four times per week to help relieve and prevent lower back pain. These exercise not only will help to alleviate and prevent lower back pain but they will also improve your posture and improve your overall health and fitness.
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Dr. Todd P. Sullivan
NOVA Chiropractic & Wellness Center
8992 Fern Park Drive,
Burke, VA 22015