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Exercising with Lower Back Pain

Increase Strength & Flexibility to Decrease Pain


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  • I'd actually like to see an exercise video demonstrating the correct way to get up off the floor and to get out of bed without hurting our backs. I'm not really able to picture in my mind's eye what is stated in the description used in the article. I remember having to figure out ways of getting out of bed when I had my c-section after birth of my son, since it hurt so much and I was nursing my son. Our bed is raised about 6 inches or so with those bed risers, which makes getting in and out of bed a little more interesting... Thanks.
  • I think this list of exercises would work only if your lower back pain is very very minor. Mine can be slight at times, worse others. The last thing I can do is lay on my back and lift legs up to 45 degree angle. I am lucky if I can even put legs down flat on the floor. I think exercise is the key and you do need to move and strengthen core. Just be very very careful you are not making the back pain worse.
  • Great article. I have cyatica, and a thinned disk in my lower back and two in my neck, and they can all be very painful. I can say that exercise has helped this pain to be greatly reduced. As first I was scared to upset my back, but everytime I took a break from exercise to "baby" it, the pain got worse. I would encourage everyone w/ back pain, to first consult your doctor so you know your personal do's and don't and then work it out
    Good article. These exercises work for me.
    I was getting lower back pain on one side and slight pain in one of my knees. However since I have started regular weight training, pilates and yoga earlier this year, my pain is gone and my stamina is increased.
  • I have been told before that I needed to strengthen my core and I've been having some bad back and hip pain this past week. I think I'm going to give these exercises a shot!
  • Excellent suggestions for exercises! My chiropractor suggested 4 of the exercises in the article for me and I will definitely try the other ones!
  • Thanks for the advise. I haven't exercised in awhile but started back 2 weeks ago - very slowly-, but still my back is causing me pain. I'm going to try these along with some additional ones from a doctor in London and see if I can get some relief. I stayed off the Elliptical Machine for a few days, but started again today in slow 5 minute increments. SparkPeople has finally motivated me, I really don't want to lose my momentum.
  • Going to do these every night for 2 weeks and see if it makes a difference. Let you know.
  • The last exercise listed is one my father's neurosurgeon had him do after his disc surgery. It really did help keep him mobile.
    If anyone has or thinks they may have disc issues, not just sore muscles, always check with a doctor or PT before starting a new exercise routine.
  • I like this. Simple exercises and they seemed to help the first time I did them. I have a leg length discrepancy.
  • I started having horrible back pain in Sept of 09 and couldn't walk for about 2 weeks. I went to a chiro and he showed me some exercises to do with a stability ball. Even walking when your back is sore is better than nothing. Laying around made it worse for me. I haven't had any significant back issues since joining the Y and working on my core a lot. I JUST pulled a muscle in the middle of my back a few days ago (what gives!) so I'm dealing with that right now but my lower back has been great.
  • I have severe degenerative spinal stenosis. The lowest disc in my back was surgically removed about 25 years ago. The two above that one are slipped and herniated. I also have had a lot of surgeries on both knees. Right now, I am basically pain free, and walking primarily for one reason. AQUATIC THERAPY. I exercise my lower body in the pool three times a week for about 45 minutes each time. The first time I did this, before I went into the water, I could not walk upright - those of you with a bad back know exactly what I mean. I was using a cane not only for support but to keep my balance. After 45 minutes of gentle exercise in the water, I got out of the water, was totally astounded to find myself walking upright and without ANY back or knee pain. Get a book on aquatic therapy, join a health club, or have your MD prescribe aquatic therapy to get you started. I consider pool therapy my mobility pill, and take it 3 times a week. it works and there are no bad side effects.
  • A move or two that was not already given to me by my therapist. Thanks for the tips. I am not able to do crunches (too much pain). The thing I try to focus on most is making sure that I engage my abdomen when I walk, drive in the car, am on the computer, etc.
  • Nice article, but it assumes that all lower back pain is caused by abdominal weakness, and the exercises seem focused on that particular problem. I have lower back pain that will recur if I don't do yoga on a regular basis. The yoga stretches do involve some abdominal work, but mostly they stretch the back itself. Standing forward bends, triangle, downward facing dog, child's pose, and twists are particularly helpful. When I do them, my back pain almost disappears.

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