Many persons we come into contact with state that they suffer with some form of back pain. This may be due to several factors which present themselves such as poor posture, injuries, or even lack of back support when doing some forms of work.
However, one of the best ways to enhance and strengthen your back and its associated conditions is to exercise. This in conjunction with strengthening your core are ways to work on your back recovery plan.
Doing a routine specifically for your back say two to three times per week can help increase your range of motion, of course you get to tone your core muscles as well as work to reduce pain and muscle tension.
To go further, you can then add activities such as Pilates, Gravity and even some Yoga movements which impact positively on the pelvis and core as well as the back. Included in here should be some Yoga and working with a balance ball, all which help to sculpt those muscles which are in our mid-section and act to stabilize the spine and protect it from any injury. Persons who sit for extended hours throughout the day should be sure to include these exercises.
Some simple exercises that may be incorporated include:
The Tilting Pelvic
- On the floor – With the back and buttocks on the floor lying in a relaxed position
- With the feet remaining on the floor slide them to your buttocks until the knees are bent
- The hands may remain relaxed on either side or may be placed on the hips
- Tighten your abdominal muscles (squeeze your core)
- Push the lower back into the floor – flatten the back against the floor
- Hold this form for 5 – 7 seconds (tight core while pushing into the floor)
- Relax for 5 seconds
- Repeat from the top – may be done 10 to 15 times in a session
Yoga – The Cat Pose
This form of yoga act to stretch and strengthen the spinal column. The overall benefit is an improvement in posture as well as a better balance. Often this pose is combined with the yoga “cow” pose to lengthen and open up the spine. These forms are great ways to warm up the back especially prior to other exercises, but if there is any back pain you should stop immediately, also if there is any recent back issues it is best to consult your medical doctor.
Cat Cow Pose Step By Step
- On all fours, your knees should be hip width distance and your hands should be directly below your shoulders.
- Your spine is neutral here.
- Inhale as you drop your belly and lift your gaze and your tail bone towards the sky. (Cow Pose)
- Exhale as you slowly tuck your chin towards your chest, lift your mid-back towards the sky and scoop your tailbone under. Like you’re imitating a scary Halloween cat. (Cat Pose)
- Do at least four rounds of these then return to a neutral Bent-over row
Bent Over Rowing
Another form to help strengthen your back muscles to support your posture and your regular activities is the Bent Over Rowing exercise. This exercise may also require you to go easy as it does call upon the muscles in the lower back region as well.
Furthermore this form of exercise may not be for the individual who has sever back or spinal issues, but more likely for someone who is looking to improve their lower back support.
- Standing with feet hip-width apart
- Knees slightly bent
- Make a slight lean forward from your hips (not your waist)
- Keep your back as flat as possible
- Form a fist with your hands and as if you have dumb-bells in hand slowly pull your hands to the lower part of your chest.
- Arms and elbows should be kept next to your ribs
- Concentrate on squeezing your shoulder blades together
- After a few reps of this light movement – the use of weights may be included, for example starting with 2-pound (or similar) dumb-bells in each hand – over time these weights can be increased to a comfortable weight.
The formation in this case is quite important, as we move from zero weights in hand to possibly 10 or 12 pound dumb-bells over time. This exercise will also help to strengthen the spinal column.