There’s nothing quite like the sting of lower back pain. The root cause can be vast, but the most common reason people fight this discomfort is that they have poor posture and a sedentary lifestyle. If you sit in an office chair all day, it can wreak havoc on your spinal column.
Pinched nerves and twisted vertebrae can cause agony that lingers. According to the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Dr. Joseph Gjolaj, poor posture causes your core muscles to be weak. However, when you strengthen this vital area, it can help to reduce or alleviate the pain in the lower back region.
So, the key is to find some various core strengthening exercises that can help you reinforce that region. If you’re considering resistance training, it’s a great way to work out, but it’s not as effective at pain relief as core strengthening. What’s the difference?
Well, core strengthening helps you increase the blood flow to the affected area. You know the importance if you have issues with the sciatic nerve. When the body sends more blood to a region, it helps to promote healing, as your blood is full of white blood cells that attack inflammation.
Ten Lower Back Pain Exercises for Instant Relief
The good news is that you don’t need an expensive gym membership or fancy equipment to start the healing journey. You can start by doing some simple lower back pain exercises to help with core strengthening right at home. Here are a few to consider.
1. Supine Transversus Abdominis Bracing
The transverse abdominis muscles are stimulated by stiffening your abs and pulling your belly button inward and upwards in the direction of your spine. For instance, you must preferably brace your abs before any significant lift for safety. Before crouching, you naturally contract your abs to get ready for physical activity.
•Start by lying on your back in a comfortable place.
•You want to bend your knees slighting, but make sure you keep your feet flat on the floor.
•You want to place your fingers around the hip bone area on your stomach.
•Now, pull your navel up and in the direction of your spine. If done correctly, you should feel your abs tighten with these movements.
•Strive to hold this stance for five seconds, then take a breather and relax.
•You need to do two sets of ten to complete this task. If done correctly, you will feel a burning sensation in this region.
2. Side Plank – On Knees
You’ll feel like you’re getting a full-body workout in with just this one exercise, but it’s one of the best lower back pain exercises around. Not only will you be working your hip, back, and stomach areas, but you will also get some strengthening in your shoulder muscles.
The key is not to let your hips or shoulders sag during these movements, or it won’t be as productive.
•Lay on the ground on your side.
•Your weight should be propped up on one forearm. Keep your knees bent slightly as you ensure your elbow is aligned underneath your shoulder.
•Now you want to get those abs working. Raise your hips till you come into the traditional side plank position. Make sure your knees are on the ground.
•You want to hold the position for 20-30 seconds, then bring your body back to the original post. Now, repeat on the other side.
•You should strive to do four reps on each side for a complete set.
3. Plank with Hands on the Table
While this is a relatively easy maneuver, you must keep your back straight while tightening your abs. Also, make sure the table you use is secure as you will be putting your weight against it.
•Face the table, and place both of your hands flat on it.
•Put your weight onto the table, but make sure you keep your arms straight.
•Now, you want to walk your feet backward until you reach the plank position.
•Do this 3-5 times and hold the position for 20-30 seconds.
4. Abdominal Crunch
The classic abdominal crunch is a go-to if you need something to help with sciatic nerve pain. It’s a fundamental maneuver you can build on to improve your lower back pain exercises routine.
•Lie flat on the ground.
•Place your feet on a wall in front of you.
•You need to keep your abdominal muscles clenched and keep your knees and hips at a 90-degree angle.
•Slowly lift your head and shoulders slightly off the ground.
•Hold for three seconds.
•Go back down to the ground and repeat.
*Note that some find it easier to cross their arms over their chest when they come up to avoid straining.
If you have a pinched nerve, this is the exercise for you. It can help with that agonizing sciatica pain.
• Lie on the floor on your stomach.
•Get a small pillow to put under your hips to provide extra support to the back region.
•Tighten your abdominals as hard as you can.
•Now, raise your left arm off the floor. Try to hold for 2-3 breaths.
•Alternate arms, and now do your right one.
•Now, do the same thing with your legs.
6. Segmental Rotation
The lower trunk rotation will help activate those core muscles and sharpen them. By doing this exercise, you can learn to stretch your trunk muscles and decrease any abnormal tone in the area. It would be best if you keep your shoulders on the ground during this maneuver.
•Start by lying on the ground on your back.
•Your arms must go out to your sides and flat on the floor.
•Make sure your knees are bent slightly, and you must keep your feet flat on the ground.
•Now, turn your head to the left as you drop your knees to the right. Your head and knees go in opposite directions.
•If you’re doing this right, only one spinal segment should move at a time. So, you need to make sure you’re going slow.
•Next, you want to bring your legs back to the midline area, and as you move your legs, tighten your abdominal muscles.
•Now, switch and move your knees to the left and your head to the right.
•Strive to do ten repetitions, five on each side.
If you need lower back pain exercises, segmental rotation is a great way to help bring strength to your core.
•Start by getting on your hands and knees.
•Your hands need to be below your shoulders but in alignment with your head.
•Lift your left arm off the floor and reach ahead of you.
•Hold for 2-4 breathes and lower the arm back to the starting position.
•Now, do the same with your right arm.
•Switch and lift each leg and hold for 2-4 breaths.
•Repeat the lift with each limb for three sets.
8. Squat (Using Counter for Support)
Many folks have trouble squatting because they have nothing to support their balance. However, using the counter is an excellent way to do this and helps to strengthen your core.
•Start by facing the countertop and place your hands on it. It would be best if you kept your feet spread wide.
•Now, get into the squat position, where you bend your knees. You should be at a 90-degree angle if done correctly.
•You want to press hard on your feet and then return to the standing position.
•Repeat this maneuver by doing three sets of ten.
9. Heel Touches
This is the exercise if you’re a beginner who needs to develop a good form.
•Lie down on the ground flat on your back.
•Keep your feet flat on the ground, and you want to make sure that your heels align with the front of the knee.
•Your lower back should remain flat, and your core muscles tightened.
•Come up into the crunch position and reach the back of your heels. Tap them with your hands and come back down.
•Repeat this maneuver ten times, and you should feel your core working hard during these sets.
10. Bent Knee Fallout
The bent knee fallout is a fantastic exercise for those who like Pilate’s style workouts. It can help you in time develop your pelvic stability. Additionally, it can help you learn to move your legs without your torso following, which can help with hip pain as you age.
•Start by lying on your back.
•Keep your knees bent, and make sure your feet don’t leave the floor.
•Now it’s time to get the abs moving. You want to pick a knee and move it down to the floor.
•Then, move that knee back to the starting position.
•Now, move the other knee to the ground.
•Keep rotating back and forth between legs until you’ve done three sets for each leg with ten reps.
Final Thoughts on Lower Back Pain Exercises
According to Psychology Today, experts believe that movement is medicine for the body, and by doing a few lower back pain exercises, you will find it’s true. Having any bodily ache can inhibit your quality of life. Using a few of these exercises can help relieve things like pinched nerves and sciatica.