It’s a common problem for many who exercise. It makes everyday activity difficult, and scares a lot of people away from any physical activity. It’s lower back pain. For those of you who suffer from it, there is hope. While there are a multitude of things that can cause back pain, from genetic malformations to injury, a number of recent studies show that a lack of core strength contributes to pain and stiffness in the lower back.
So what's the best way to deal with lower back pain that your health care provider has attributed to a lack of core strength? Exercise. This might cause a little more pain in the beginning, but under the care of your health provider, it can reduce your pain in the long run. And for many people, the long-term solution for back pain lies in abdominal, hip and lower back strengthening and stretching exercises.
Some pain or aches in your lower back might be the result of weak abdominal muscles. When you have a weak abs, you are more likely to have poor posture and your lower back muscles are forced to take over, which can strain them in a way that becomes uncomfortable or painful over time. You can minimize back pain by doing exercises that make the muscles in your abs stronger, while also training to increase the strength and flexibility level in your lower back, hips and thighs.
Everyone's back pain is different, so it's a good idea to check with your health care provider about what's best for you. If core strength is your problem, the following exercises can help.
Leg Raises to strengthen stomach and hip muscles
How to: Lie on your back with your arms at your sides. Lift one leg off the floor to about a 45° angle. Hold your leg up for a count of 10 and return it to the floor. Do the same with the other leg. Repeat 5 times with each leg. If that is too difficult, keep one knee bent and the foot flat on the ground while raising the opposite leg.
Leg Raises to strengthen back and hip muscles
How to: Lie on your stomach. Tighten the muscles in one leg and raise it from the floor. Raise it as high as you can (approximately 30°) without causing any discomfort to your lower back or lifting your hip off the floor. Hold your leg up for a count of 10 and return it to the floor. Do the same with the other leg. Repeat 5 times with each leg.
Article created on: 11/19/2003