Approximately 80 percent of Americans will have at least one bout with back pain during their lifetimes, according to the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons. Pain in the lower back can originate from several different structures: spine, nerves, muscles, ligaments and tendons. The pain may originate in different locations and radiate depending on the affected structure. Often times the pain in the low back can feel like a burning sensation, tingling, dull aching, or sharp pain and may also be combined with muscle spasms and decreased range of motion.
Causes of Low Back Pain
- Muscle strain and spinal ligament sprains
- Muscular imbalances
- Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)
- Spinal stenosis
- Herniated disk
- Osteoporosis induced fractures
6 Exercises To Help Relieve Back Pain
Depending on the severity of pain and the diagnosis for low back pain, often times simple exercises can help to alleviate the problem by strengthening weak musculature, increasing bone density as well as stretching tight muscles that are aggravating the issue.
Aerobic exercise in necessary for a healthy cardiovascular system and maintenance of a healthy weight. Swimming is a zero-impact form of cardiovascular exercise that can effectively manage low back pain and still be challenging for all levels.
If you don’t have access to a pool or are unable to swim, the elliptical at your local gym will provide a challenging aerobic workout that is lower weight bearing then walking. Walking outside could aggravate pain in the low back from the high impact of cement and hard surfaces, therefore the elliptical is a great option to reduce stress and pain.
- start on hands and knees, with shoulders positioned directly over hands and the hips over the knees.
- Raise one arm straight out in front to shoulder height, while maintaining a neutral spinal and hip position.
- Extend the opposing leg straight out from the hip.
- Hold this position for 15-30 seconds being sure to maintain a neutral hip and spinal position.
- Lie supine on the floor with arms at the sides, knees bent and feet flat on the ground.
- Contract the abdominal and gluteal muscles and lift the pelvis so that the body maintains a straight line from the shoulders to the knees.
- Hold this position for the recommended time.
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.
- Lower your knee and repeat with the other leg.
- kneel on hands and knees, with hips over the knees and shoulders over the wrists.
- Pull the navel toward the spine, rounding the back and feeling the stretch in the lower back. Hold for 10-20 seconds.
- Lift the chest and tailbone, extending the spine and feeling the back arch. Hold for 10-20 seconds