What are the best exercises to do if you have back pain?
The first question you need to ask yourself is “why do I have back pain?’’
There are many factors that can be the reasoning behind it.
You could have tight hamstrings, tight hip flexors, pinched nerves, sciatica, bulging disc, scoliosis, osteoarthritis, etc….
The next question to ask yourself is “what is my goal?”
Are you trying to help alleviate back pain by becoming stronger, or are you just wanting to lose weight and don’t want to participate in an exercise that can potentially exasperate your pain?
Just as a general rule of thumb, Exercise is Medicine. Movement is better than no movement.
Regardless of your goal, I encourage you to participate in physical activity. Depending on the severity and Dr. clearance needed, you may begin with physical therapy or start working out independently. You may also want to consider a Fitness Professional who can program appropriately and specifically to your health needs and goals.
Incorporate exercises that are going to make you stronger and avoid very strenuous movements that are unnecessary. Basically, there are different routes to take that can still achieve the same end goal or outcome. A fitness professional can still work your core and legs utilizing other equipment and exercise movements instead of putting you right under a barbell and have you do back squats. That approach is just not practical to start. It seems obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many people want to be able to perform those movements from the get-go when they haven’t even built their base strength foundation yet and or they haven’t learned how to perform the proper functional mechanics. Instead of helping the problem, you’d be putting yourself at higher risk of injury.
Work with it and if need be, around the pain. Stay consistent and build up gradually.
As a Fitness Professional, most individuals I encounter that come in with back pain usually come from a sedentary lifestyle, office job, where they sit all day and have a WEAK CORE. Rarely from a previous sports injury or known orthopedic conditions.
Core strength is a huge deal when it comes to back pain.
Your back will always have your back! It’s the core muscles that need reminding. Think about how taxing that is on your back to be carrying the load all day with no help from your abdominals.
That be my first tip, incorporate more stabilizing and core strengthening exercises. Always be aware of your abdominals. In everything we do, they should be engaged and utilized, not just with pushing and pulling, but sitting and standing too.
The second tip is stretching and mobility exercises. Usually, it is as simple as stretching a tight muscle. That tight muscle creates an imbalance and pulls on your skeletal system, pulling you out of wack! That muscle imbalance can be a precursor to potential future problems if left untreated and neglected.
Know where you stand with back pain first! Determine the severity of it and get a Dr. clearance if necessary.
Second, know your goal. Once you have figured out where you stand with your chronic back pain, you can plan your exercises appropriately and specific to your needs.
Again, movement is better than no movement.
Need help with a specific plan to improve your back pain? Schedule your free fitness consultation, by submitting your information under contact form or by calling 210-495-3131.