Probably if you are like most people with back pain the last thing you want to do is exercise. At one time bed rest was the prescribed treatment for back pain. But since the 90’s physicians and therapists have recognized the importance of staying active as the best way to ease back pain and prevent a recurrence. After my back surgery the surgeon recommended that I immediately start exercising. The exercise he recommended was walking. As important as it is to exercise, it’s vital that you do the right exercises. Here is a list of the exercises to avoid and the exercises to do to relieve your back pain and strengthen your muscles.
Exercises to Avoid:
First of all use common sense. Start slow and gradually increase as you body adapts to the exercises.
Avoid any activity that involves positions or movements that might cause further injury and pain. Activities like tennis, golf and baseball involve fast turns and movements that probably will cause problems for your back.
Yoga: Although some yoga positions can be part of your recovery plan, there are many positions that must be avoided.
Long Periods of Sitting: No, this is not an exercise, but it is something to avoid. If you do a lot of sitting make sure your chair is ergonomically designed to give you proper support. Do not sit more than an hour at a time without getting up walking around and stretching.
Exercise to Do:
First of all it is a good idea to use a trainer or therapist to show you proper technique. The right exercise for your back done with a flawed technique will injure you as surely as the wrong exercise.
The exercises you want to concentrate on are those that will strengthen the abdominal muscles, legs, back and buttocks.
Walking: Find a good supportive walking shoe and pick a level trail. Again start slow and gradually increase distance.
Swimming: If you have access to a pool swimming is one of the best exercises you can do because the water’s bouncy takes the pressure off the back.
Pelvic Lifts and Abdominal Curls: These exercises are done flat on your back with knees bent.
Stretching: Like all exercises there are good stretches and bad stretches and like I stated earlier proper techniques is essential.
Remember it is important to begin moving and exercising as soon as possible. It may seemed that exercises right after suffering back pain is wrong, but studies have shown the effectiveness in mild exercise for an aching back. Strengthening your core though exercising can eliminate the pain of a bad back and prevent another injury. Using common sense and taking it easy can and will improve your back and in so doing improve over all sense of well being.