The best exercises for back pain

Each of us has experienced a backache at some point in their lives.

Pain in the neck, chest or lumbar regions of the spine may be caused by a lack of quality physical activities or, on the other hand, too many incorrect activities. This is one of the most frequent problems listed among lifestyle diseases.

What’s the best thing we can do to offset it?

First, if you suffer from acute or even chronic pain, see a specialist to get properly examined and diagnosed.

„More and more frequently you see physiotherapists collaborating directly with personal trainers. It’s an ideal combination. The physiotherapist finds out what causes your pain and works with the trainer to come up with an ideal exercise program and teach you to adopt correct motion patterns in your sports and everyday activities,“ says Martin Iterský, a member of My Identity Nutrition.

Do you suffer from back pain when sleeping or sitting for some time?

A cramping or aching back is very often caused by stress, lack of rest, incorrect posture and related incorrect motion patterns or unsuitable eating habits leading to obesity. The largest cause is a sedentary lifestyle. The human body is designed to keep moving. Sitting in the office for a long time puts the motion system under an enormous strain which has to be compensated by enough quality physical activities. If your back is in pain, sitting on a gymnastic ball won’t help.

What are the principles of doing an exercise correctly?

  • It’s essential to mobilize your thoracic spine;, ask your trainer or physiotherapist for a short demonstration, so you can easily do it on your own. The cervical and lumbar spine has to remain stable.
  • No more sit-ups, crunch-ups, or crunches. Instead, learn to provide your limbs with some good support when moving. Practice plank and other similar exercises. If you manage to repeatedly keep straight posture without having your torso dip towards the floor, it’s a good start.
  • A stable torso is based on an ability to resist external forces, i.e. external stress that moves us out of our ideal posture. If you are carrying a bag with groceries in one hand, try to keep your torso straight without tilting to the side. This is an excellent way to exercise your body core.
  • Add more physical activity into your everyday life. A properly performed training plan or torso stability exercises will help you get rid of the pain in your back.

The following exercises will help you stretch your back, loosen and strengthen your flabby back muscles as well as your core.

Relaxing your lumbar region – child’s pose

1) Relaxing your lumbar region – Child’s pose 

Kneel down and sit back on your heels. Lie forward, placing your torso on your thighs and stretch your arms forward. Lean forward with your forehead against the floor and relax your whole body. Breathe deeply. Then slowly turn your torso to the sides, alternately, while resting your forehead on the floor.

Repetitions: 2 x 30 seconds in each position

Mobilizing the spine – cat pose

2) Mobilizing the spine #1 – Cat pose

On all fours, hands under shoulders, knees under hip joints, head level with the spine. Inhale while pushing your thoracic spine downward, tilt your head slightly back. Exhale while pushing the thoracic spine upwards, stretch your neck and press your buttocks together.

Repetitions: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

Mobilizing the spine #2

3) Mobilizing the spine #2

On all fours, hands under shoulders, knees under hip joints, head level with the spine. Put one hand on the top of your head. Inhale while rotating the torso upwards to follow the elbow of your bent arm. Exhale while rotating the torso back down, push the elbow of your bent arm between the opposite arm and leg.

Repetitions: 3 sets of 5 repetitions per side

Strengthening the core, activating the buttock muscles – bird dog

4) Strengthening the core, activating the buttock muscles – Bird dog

On all fours, hands under shoulders, knees under hip joints, head level with the spine. Exhale while extending your right hand and left leg. Inhale as you return to the original position.

Repetitions: 3 set of 5 repetitions per side.

Make sure your spine remains in its neutral position during the entire exercise.

Strengthening HSSPosílení HSS 2

5) Strengthening core stability muscles, improving diaphragm breathing technique – Dead bug

Lie on your back while pressing your lower back into the mat. Bend your hips and knees to form a right angle while keeping your arms extended.

Option 1 – easy: Begin in the starting position. Exhale while extending one arm. Bring it back to its original position as you inhale. Then do the same with the other arm. Do not move your legs.

Option 2 – intermediate: Begin in the starting position. Keep your arms extended and still. Exhale while extending one leg. Inhale as you bring it back to the original position. Then extend the other leg.

Option 3 – advanced: Begin in the starting position. Exhale while extending your right arm and left leg. Inhale as you return to the starting position. Repeat with left arm and right leg.

Repetitions: 3 sets of 5 repetitions per side

Activating and strengthening buttock muscles – bridge

6) Activating and strengthening buttock muscles – Bridge

Lie on your back, bend your legs, feet flat on the floor, arms by your sides. Exhale while pushing your pelvis upwards. Flex your buttock muscles, keep your core straight. Inhale while returning to the starting position.

Repetitions: 3 sets of 10 repetitions

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Authors: Andrea Burgerová (@abugyna) & Jan Jiskra (@jiskric_coach)

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