Easy Back Strengthening Exercises
The results of back strengthening exercises can include remedying back pain, improving flexibility, bettering your balance, reducing your likelihood of injury, and more. Having good habits in place to stay active and stretch day after day (if possible when you wake up and before you lie down to sleep at night) allows you to perform better in many areas of life, keeping you strong, mobile, and in good health throughout your life. Most medical advice includes exercises and physical activity for maintaining strength, balance, and mobility.
Relieving Back Pain
If you have soreness, stiffness, or tension in your back or neck muscles, back strengthening exercises can be a way to relieve this. Physical therapy like these exercises are a great way to relieve many problems with spine, muscle, and back pain. If you notice that your back pain symptoms do not improve, or your symptoms become worse over time in spite of the back exercises, you may want to see a doctor or health professional. You may be experiencing a real injury or serious back pain that needs treatment.
Helping Athletes Perform
Whether you are a runner, a climber, or a horseback rider, all kinds of physical activity requires muscle strength and fitness. Getting the most out of your activities and your health means finding habits that will help you perform better day by day. The more you strengthen your body as a whole, the greater you will perform in all athletic areas. Several of the practices and moves included in this routine will help with keeping you active, free of stiffness and soreness, and at your best.
Preserving Mobility and Balance
As we age, balance and mobility can gradually become diminished as the body is worn down. An effective way to combat these effects is with back strengthening exercise and other physical activity for health. Using workouts to strengthen the muscles, better your posture, and keep improving balance is a way of keeping you moving and functioning more freely and without back pain.
The Fitness Routine
Our recommended exercise is simple and consists of one brief warm-up, a few basic exercises (you may repeat them multiple times), and one cool-down stretch routine (it’s good to stretch a few times in addition to the usual routine). Though the exercises are simple and not excessively strenuous, using only your own body weight, they can be very effective in strengthening the body and improving physical health if done with consistency several times.
Warm-up: 30-Second Stretch
Start your routine with 30 seconds of a basic warm-up stretch. Stand upright, feet flat and a slight width apart, look directly ahead, and stretch your arms up as high as you can (your knees shouldn’t be bent). Hold this one pose for 30 seconds. You can replace this exercise with a vibrant warm-up instead: jumping rope several times or running in place. This warmup exercise gets your heart pumping and your central nervous system ready for activity.
In addition to strengthening the spine, lower back, and core, these exercises can be helpful in strengthening other muscles, including the glutes, hips, chest, neck (cervical spine), arms, and legs. Take a few minutes to perform this routine as often as needed.
Minute 1: Abdominal Brace
Research studies that reviewed this exercise found that is a great one for abdominal muscles, and it triggers all the contracting muscles in the stomach wall, including the neighboring obliques and rectus muscles. Abdominal brace exercises enhance the connection in between the international muscles of the abdominal area and the deep local abdominal muscles of the lower back, especially the back extensors and the quadratus lumborum (the inmost stomach muscles), significantly strengthening the your core.
Abdominal Brace Starting Position
To do an abdominal brace, stand upright, chest forward, feet flat and slightly apart, neutral spine, and pull your stomach in, as if you were about to get punched (you can hold your arms straight in front of you or on both sides for balance if you like). Your knees should not be bent. You should feel your stomach muscles tighten below your chest as you pull even if you don’t yet feel your back muscles. Hold the brace for 30 seconds, then unwind for 10. Repeat these exercises a few times keeping your feet flat.
To Get the Correct Form
If you poke your extended fingertips right into your abdomen or low back below your ribs and feel the tightened up muscles as you pull, you’ll know you’re doing the abdominal brace properly. You ought to feel the muscles move under your fingertips as you brace and after that relax.
Minute 2: The Plank
As far as back exercises go, the plank is a great way to strengthen your back, core and glutes all at once. It is a simple exercise that requires you only to hold a position for a time. If you like, you may repeat the exercise a few times.
Plank for the Lower Back
For the starting position, lie face down on the floor and lift yourself up on your elbows (shoulder width apart) and toes, with your legs straight and together. Look down at your hands and keep a neutral spine, brace your core muscles, and contract your gluteus (butt) muscles and lower back to form a straight line with your body. You may keep your hands clasped below your chest or neck for these exercises if you like. You may lie back down to unwind the exercise.
Get the Right Form
To avoid rounding your scapular muscles, think of pulling your shoulder blades into your back towards your spine. The plank is great for the core, because it works all the significant muscle groups, consisting of the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominus, the external and internal oblique muscles, the glutes, and all the muscles of the scapula location. Do not bend your knees or allow them to touch the floor, they should not even be slightly bent.
Purpose of the Plank
Research studies that reviewed this exercise revealed that the reward of the plank is that planks do not just enhance your spine, lower back muscles and abs, they also enhance your arms and shoulders, neck or cervical spine, thighs, and butt.
Minute 3: Side Plank
Sometimes called the side bridge, the side plank is particularly excellent for enhancing the supporting muscles of the lower back using your body weight, particularly the quadratus lumborum, lateral obliques, and transverse abdominus muscles.
Side Plank Starting Position
To start, lie on your side. You will want to keep your low back and spine straight and each leg together (your knees should not be bent), holding yourself on your elbow. You should pull your hip off the floor, your body forming a straight line. You will want to try to hold this position for about half a minute. Switch sides to lie on your opposite side and repeat. You can repeat this exercise a few times per side if you like as well.
Alternative Plank Back Exercises
If side planks injure your shoulders or cervical spine (neck), try an alternative approach that raises your legs and feet rather than your upper body, neck, and chest. For the starting position, lie on your side on the floor with your arm flat below you. Place your feet on a box or low stool about 12 inches high, with your leading leg in front of your bottom leg (the heel of your leading foot should touch the toe of the bottom foot). Once again, your knees should not be bent. Brace your core and pull or raise your hips and low back off the floor. Try to hold for at least 20 seconds. Return to a laying-down position, change sides and repeat the movement. You may return to the original position and perform the exercise multiple times if you like. Research studies that reviewed this exercise reveal that this position supplies more muscle activation than side planks using your shoulders.
Minute 4: Attendant
This workout is a fantastic one for training the back extensor muscles, including the longissimus, iliocostalis, and multifidii. To begin this exercise, rest on your hands and knees flat on the floor. Slowly lift your right hand to reach in front of you, level with or above your head, and lift your left leg behind you in the same way. Hold this pose for 8 seconds, and slowly lower your hand and knee to the ground again to return to the quadruped position with your knees bent, and switch to lift the left arm and left leg. Repeat the full exercise two reps more per side at least. You may return to the original pose and repeat the exercise as many times as you like. If you extend your toes out each of these times, you’ll get more muscle activation in your hamstrings in addition to your back.
Cool-Down: 30-Second Stretch
To end your back workout, do a hip flexor stretch, Spiderman style. To do this stretch, enter the push-up pose on the floor. Look straight ahead and slowly step your left leg forward, bending your knee until it aligns with your left hand, which should rest on the ground- you’ll look like Spiderman all set to jump onto the side of a building. Slowly move your hips and lower back forward into a stretch with your body weight and hold for 10 seconds. Bring your knee back to the original pushup position on the floor and unwind for 10 seconds, then repeat bending the same knee and leg for another 10 seconds. Change sides and repeat the stretch on your opposite knee and leg. If you feel that you need to, you can repeat this a few more times.
What to do with Pain Symptoms
If you start experiencing or have been experiencing back pain or knee pain for a significant amount of time, you may want to see a health professional for medical advice about the issue. It is possible you may have injured yourself, or you are experiencing pain from a source other than just sore muscles (like a pinched nerve). Depending on the location of the pain, whether it is in your shoulder and neck area or in your low back, a chiropractor may be able to more clearly identify a source of the pain and help you find treatment.
It is important not to let chronic back pain like this go on unaddressed. If you have an injury (even a small one), you can cause it to worsen by exerting yourself excessively every day and not heeding the symptoms of pain and sound medical advice. Try to keep any relevant health information handy to help your physical therapist or doctor. A physical therapist may be able to help you find a more effective way to remedy the problem and help you to recover fully.
References and Sources:
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Sex-related differences in Sports Medicine: Bone Health and Stress Fractures https://www.aaos.org/aaosnow/2019/sep/clinical/clinical01/
Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms
Posture Pump. https://posturepump.com/
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