Three good strengthening exercises to support your lower back
As we explored in our last newsletter, low back pain is overwhelmingly common, with tens of millions of Americans impacted by symptoms at this very moment. Each person’s situation is unique and the severity of these individual’s back pain varies, but most frequently experience some degree of disability or limitation that interferes with their normal way of life.
One of the many consequences of having low back pain is that it often reduces physical activity levels. Whether it’s not accepting an invitation to play a pickup game of basketball or avoiding yard work that involves lots of bending and twisting, a sizable portion of low back pain patients will notice a decrease in movement because of their condition. Unfortunately, moving less can actually increase pain levels, making it even more difficult to move and initiating a challenging cycle of pain and inactivity.
On the flip side, moving more and staying active is one of the best things you can do for your pain. Although it might seem sensible to avoid any motions that could lead to pain, the truth is that regular physical activity is crucial because it helps to keep your muscles strong and joints flexible. Exercise will also increase blood flow throughout the body and specifically to the lower back area, which may reduce stiffness and speed up the healing process.
Activating the lower back and core muscles can help with support and stability for the spine, which in effect leads to less strain and less pain. With this in mind, we present the three best strengthening exercises for your low back and hip muscles.
NOTE: before you try these or any other exercise program, please consult with your physical therapist or physician.
- Glute bridge (bridging)
- The Bird Dog
- Lying lateral leg lift
In our next newsletter, we’ll look into the role that physical therapy can play when low back pain persists after performing these exercises and for patients that require a more hands–on approach to their condition.