Which Low Back Exercise Is Right For You
If you are experiencing pain on one side of your back or leg, then try the first exercise and monitor symptoms as you exercise. Watch for centralization, which is a decrease in leg or thigh pain and an increase in low back pain. Centralization that occurs while you are performing an exercise is a good sign and indicates that the particular exercise is the correct one for you to be doing.
If your symptoms worsen, fail to centralize, or only centralize partially, move on to the next exercise in the list. Attempt the exercise, and monitor any changes in your symptoms. Remember pain that moves closer to your spine is a good sign.
Before starting any exercise for your back, it is a good idea to check in with your healthcare provider to be sure that exercise is safe for you to do. Your local physical therapist can help you decide on the best exercises for your specific condition.
Pt For Low Back Pain Targets The Right Muscles
Physical therapy exercises work well for back pain because they target the right muscles. Your spine has three layers of muscles, designed to protect and support it, called the intrinsic layer. The multifidus muscle is the second layer of these muscles. It consists of a series of small bundles running along both sides of the spinal column. As part of the back extensor muscles, they help support your back so you can extend, tilt, arch and rotate your body. When you suffer back injury or pain this important muscle shrinks and atrophies. Therefore your best course of action is to find exercises targeting this muscle to help restore proper function. Physical therapy exercises activate the deep multifidus muscle so it can provide the strength and support your back needs.
When Exercise Doesn’t Work
All too often, spine practitioners refer patients for physical therapy and the patients return to the doctor stating they stopped the therapy because it hurt their backs or they just weren’t getting adequate low back pain relief for their efforts. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, here are a few reasons physical therapy rehabilitation may not alleviate back pain:
- The program prescribed does not include active exercise. This occurs when a patient’s physical therapy program includes very little muscle training and focuses more on the use of hot packs, cold packs, and stimulation therapy. While hot/cold packs and deep tissue massage can often provide immediate pain relief, they are best used in conjunction with active exercise as opposed to replacing it.
- Patients do the exercises incorrectly. Patients may not have a thorough understanding of how their exercises should be performed to bring about desired benefits. If this is the case, then the patient may benefit from a more thorough explanation of the exercise by a spine specialist and/or supervision and guidance by a qualified physical therapist who could correct possible errors in exercise performance.
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Simple Stretches For Lower Back Pain
Ernie Gamble July 12, 2020Low Back Pain
Lower back pain is one of the most common reasons people visit their doctor. It is also a common reason to miss work. More than 80% of people will experience back pain at some point in their life. The majority will recover well in just a few weeks. However, about 10% will experience ongoing back pain. Whether you experience ongoing or intermittent back pain, doing proper back stretches will help. This article shows you 5 simple stretches for your lower back pain.
Modified Seated Side Straddle
The seated side straddle exercise stretches the hamstring, the abductors, and the extensor muscles in the middle and lower back. The seated side straddle requires a person to follow these steps:
- Step 1: Sit with both legs flat against the floor and extended out in front of the body. The feet should be far enough apart that the legs form a V shape.
- Step 2: Bend the left leg, bringing the left foot up to touch the right knee and letting the left knee fall out away from the body.
- Step 3: Keeping the back straight, bend from the hips and reach forward toward the toes of the right foot.
- Step 4: Slowly round the spine, bringing the hands toward the right ankle or shin while lowering the head as close as possible to the right knee.
- Step 5: Hold the position for 30 seconds, then relax for 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
- Step 6: Perform 56 repetitions.
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Exercises To Strengthen And Relieve Pain
Core and back strength is incredibly important when it comes to low back pain. The following exercises are designed to help you strengthen these areas and ease the pain in your back. Well begin with the easy ones and move on to the more difficult ones.
Note: Most of these exercises require that you engage your ab muscles. The proper form calls for a drawing-in of the muscles, instead of a bulging-out. Your lower stomach should flatten in a little bit. If youre pushing your abs out, youre likely over-flexing.
Pilates And Low Back Pain
Pilates as a rehabilitation programme is used in treatment of chronic low back pain and its results could be compared to exercise programs results. Pilates consists of isometric contraction of abdominal muscles, pelvic floor muscles, gluteus maximus and multifidus. Exercises consisted of 5âmin of warm-up , 50âmin of Pilates exercises and 5âmin of cool down .
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Feel Better With Stretches For Lower Back Pain
Exercise has a powerful protective effect on lower back pain. Exercise performed consistently over time will reduce your chances of experiencing back pain. It will not totally eliminate your risk. However, when you do experience an episode of back pain, you will recover easier and quicker. Large studies show strengthening exercises are the best for reducing your chances of back pain. However, stretches for lower back pain are also proven to be helpful. The best approach is to include both strengthening and stretching exercises in a regular program.
What To Do When Low Back Pain Occurs
If you are currently experiencing low back pain, gentle self-care exercises should be started to restore mobility and decrease pain. Since poor posture is a major cause of low back pain,maintaining proper posture is important. Use a small pillow or towel roll to support the spine while sitting. Remember, if pain prevents you from exercising or if pain persists for more than 2-3 weeks, a visit to a physician, physical therapist, or other healthcare provider is necessary.
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Learn Some Back Exercises From Our Video Guide And Download Your Own Printable Guide
If you want to try stretching and exercising to help treat your back pain, start now from the comfort of your home. Our video contains three exercises you can safely perform. You can also that covers these exercises in detail. This can be helpful to print out and use for reference whenever you need to exercise.
Want to learn more about how to exercise to help reduce and prevent back pain? Contact our team to talk to us about treating your back pain or to schedule an appointment with one of our physical therapists.
Easy Ways To Start Managing Your Pain
Dealing with back pain can be extremely uncomfortable and inconvenient. Tons of people turn to prescription medication to manage their pain, but with opioid dependence on the rise, many of them are looking for a better option. According to a study in the BMC Health Services medical journal, physical therapy can decrease dependency on pain medication while also reducing the out-of-pocket costs for patients.
Your physical therapist can provide simple strategies and exercises to help relieve your back pain during your appointments. Below are three techniques that can dramatically decrease your discomfort from back pain, and the best part is that you can even do them at home!
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Quick Physiotherapy Exercises For Lower Back Pain
by Karen Ngo | May 3, 2021 | Learn
Lower back pain is one of the most common health issues that we treat at Nexus Massage & Rehab. Due to COVID-19 and our work-from-home lifestyles, people spend over 9 hours a day sitting. Sitting too long with poor ergonomic posture can lead to weak muscles and result in lower back pain. Below are 5 quick and effective physiotherapy exercises you can do right now to relieve your lower back pain.
Human bodies are made to move.
The top 3 lower back pain complaints from our patients are general lower back muscular tension and stiffness, sharp lower back pain, and lower back pain that shoots down the legs. Seeing a results-driven health professional is the most effective way to restore your body.
There are also simple exercises that will help you recover. You can perform these exercises anywhere. They are free and require zero equipment.
Begin Your Low Back Stretches Today
Stretches for lower back pain are best if they become part of your daily routine. Feel free to modify the 5 stretches included here to meet your needs. There are also many other stretches that have helped many thousands of people with back pain. The keys are to find what works for you and be consistent.
Dont wait for your lower back pain to get out of control. Start stretching while you are feeling good. Dont you want to feel great, all the time? If you need help getting started, contact your physical therapist. The doctors of physical therapy at BSR have been helping people in Southern Ocean County move without pain since 2007.
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How Do I Know If My Low Back Pain Is Serious
Low back pain is serious if you are having difficulty managing your daily activities, if you lose control of your bowel or bladder, or if you lose sensation through the inner groin. If you are having difficulty managing your day to day activities, it is recommended that you visit a physical therapy clinic, like MOMENTUM Physical Therapy in Okotoks, to determine a plan for recovery for you. If you lose bowel/bladder control OR lose sensation on the inner thighs, you must immediately go to the emergency department of your nearest hospital – this is a medical emergency that needs to be seen immediately.
Back Aches And Injuries Are Common Among Older Adults But Some Simple Stretches Can Help
by Stacey Colino, AARP, March 17, 2022
Stevica Mrdja / EyeEm
Whether its chronic, acute or episodic, low back pain is a common problem among adults, causing more disability around the world than any other condition.
At least one-fourth of U.S. adults report having low back pain in the last three months, national survey data shows. And research suggests that as many as 80 percent of adults will experience low back pain at some point in their lives, meaning if you havent had it yet and you dont have it now, theres a good chance that you will in the future especially since back pain becomes more frequent with advancing age.
Common causes of lower back pain include overuse injuries , muscle or ligament strains or sprains, trauma , degenerative discs, spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis, experts say. Another prime culprit: sedentary behavior. A 2019 study in the journal Applied Ergonomics found an association between static sitting behavior and chronic low back pain among people who worked at a call center.
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General Lower Back Pain
General lower back muscular tension or stiffness is the most common form of lower back pain that we treat here at Nexus. Patients who work from home are often hunched over their desks for hours. Many professionals suffer from poor desk and home office ergonomics.
If you have general lower back pain, the good news is that the 5 easy physiotherapy exercises below will help you recover quickly and effectively.
Other causes for general lower back pain:
- Sitting too long with no breaks.
- Post-exercise soreness and delayed onset muscle soreness .
- Not sleeping well.
- Sleeping with poor posture.
How to quickly relieve general lower back pain:
While physiotherapy exercises are helpful, the fastest way to rid yourself of general lower back pain is to see a health professional who will create a personalized plan to optimize your recovery process.
All health professionals at Nexus Massage & Rehab are trained to help, but we recommend seeing a registered massage therapist or acupuncture provider for fast relief of general lower back pain.
How Do I Exercise To Reduce Low Back Pain
Most people who have back pain naturally feel better by doing certain motions. Some feel better sitting . Others feel better standing . Exercise that moves you toward your more comfortable position is usually more successful in treating your back pain.footnote 1 For example, if you are more comfortable sitting down, exercises that bend you forwardsuch as partial sit-ups and knee-to-chest exercisesmay help you.
Talk to your doctor before you start an exercise program, and only do exercises that do not increase your symptoms.
The most effective exercise programs for chronic low back pain are designed specifically for you and are supervised.footnote 2 For example, a physiotherapist might teach you an exercise program that you can use at home. Then you would see the therapist every so often to check on your progress and advance your program.
- Talk to your doctor or physiotherapist if you are unsure how to do these exercises or if you feel any pain when you are doing the exercises.
- Try to exercise a little bit every day.
- Get some type of aerobic exercise, such as walking, every day. Even a couple of minutes will be helpful, and you can gradually increase your time.
- Choose a couple of stretching and strengthening exercises that you enjoy doing, or vary them from day to day.
Ask your doctor or physiotherapist whether there are additional exercises that will work best for you.
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Physiotherapy Exercises For Lower Back Pain
With back pain, many people feel like resting is the best option to aid their specific ailment. Although resting is recommended for more severe injuries, prolonged back pain can benefit from some minor exercises. These exercises can strengthen a persons back, stomach, and leg muscles.
Working on these issues can also help a persons spine, which is deeply connected to back pain and other issues. Before beginning any new exercise regimen, its essential to ask your health care professional to ensure its okay for you to try the exercises out. Depending on the back pain, some exercises might be better than others.
How Do Physical Therapy Exercises Treat Back Pain
A significant contributing factor to lower back pain is stiff and weak muscles in the back and abdomen. Weak and stiff muscles themselves are uncomfortable, and they dont provide the support your spine needs to maintain posture. This leads to pressure increase on the spine, which causes irritation and inflammation affecting the surrounding nerves. Weak and stiff muscles are more prone to injury, causing your back pain.
Stretching and exercising can improve the strength and flexibility of the muscles in your back and abdomen. This can reduce pressure off the spine, lowering your chances of injury.
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Lumbar Flexion Rotation Stretch
The flexion rotation stretch is started by lying on one side. Usually, your painful side is down on the table. Straighten your bottom leg, and tuck your top leg behind your bottom knee.
Reach your top hand to your top shoulder blade, and rotate your spine so your top shoulder moves backwards toward the floor. Hold this position for a second or two, and then return to the starting position. Repeat 10 repetitions, and note any changes in your symptoms.
Still dealing with symptoms? You may need to try a lumbar flexion progression. Check out the final step in this program to learn how to get started on that.
Back Rehab Exercises: Pelvic Lift
The multifidus muscle is one of the most important muscles to consider when treating back pain. This is a small back muscle that runs from vertebra to vertebra. Its job is to protect your vertebra from sliding forward in relation to other moving vertebra and gravity.
The pelvic lift trains the multifidus muscle to respond more quickly.
First, you lay down on your back and bend your knees. Then cross your arms over your chest to reduce compensation that affects the exercises effectiveness.
Finally, you lift your pelvis up towards the ceiling/sky and hold it there for 10 seconds. Repeat this exercise twice a day in sets of 10.
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Physical Therapy For Low Back Pain Relief
Patients suffering from most types of low back pain are often referred for physical therapy for four weeks as an initial conservative treatment option before considering other more aggressive treatments, including back surgery. The goals of physical therapy are to decrease back pain, increase function, and teach the patient a maintenance program to prevent future back problems.
Common forms of physical therapy include:
This article focuses on active physical therapy and exercise as a means to help recover from back problems and prevent or minimize future flare-ups of low back pain.