Relief Through Exercise
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EXERCISES FOR BACK PAIN RELIEF

Pain management centre

BEFOREYOU BEGIN
If you are suffering from chronic or recurrent back pain, you should review these exercises with your doctor before using them. Your doctor may want to modify these exercises so that, they would suit your individual needs. If a new pain or any other symptom arises while doing these exercises or afterwards, consult you r doctor.

HINTS FOR SUCCESS
These exercises would be effective only if you use them regularly and perform correctly. Here are a few hints to make these exercises work well for you.

  • Make this exercise regimen as much a part of your daily life as brushing your teeth
  • Set aside enough time everyday so that you are rot in a hurry when you do these exercises
  • Find a comfortable surface to work on. A firm mat or a carpet is preferred. Avoid surfaces that are very hard
  • Do all the exercises slowly and smoothly. Avoid quick and jerky movements. Initially, you may experience a feeling of tightness during some 0' the exercises, which is normal. However, a routine that causes tingling in your legs or a sharp pain in your back or legs should be discontinued
  • If possible, warm up before doing these exercises by walking around or taking a warm shower
  • This exercise programme is designed for people with different levels of fitnesses. Find your own level for each exercise and gradually work your way up. If pushing yourself to a new level causes pain, back off and give yourself more time.

 

CONDITIONING EXERCISES

THE PELVIC TILT

The pelvic tilt is more than an exercise, it is a posture that you should learn and maintain as often as possible. The pelvic tilt reduces stress on the lower back caused due to sitting or standing.

Lie on your back with your knees bent and your head comfortably supported. You will probably notice a space between your lower back and the surface on which you are lying if you check with one hand.

Do this exercise the same way at all levels.

Squeeze your buttocks together, tighten your abdominal muscles and raise your buttocks slightly off the floor until the small of your back is pressing flat against the surface. This is' the pelvic tilt position. Hold on to this position for 10 seconds, then relax completely. Notice how the curve in your back returns. The pelvic tilt rotates your pelvic bone and decreases the curve in the lower part of your spine. The more you practice this exercise, the more natural the position will become. Do the pelvic tilt every time you think about it. That will hasten the day when your body begins to hold the position automatically.

Repeat the pelvic tilt two more times

Your may find it easier to do the pelvic tilt with your knees bent. Everyday try straightening your legs a little more. Do not go beyond the point where the small of your back begins to lift away from the floor.

LATERAL TRUNK STRETCH

This exercise stretches the muscles on both sides of the abdomen.

Bend your knees and put your head on the outstretched elbows. Then cross your left leg over your right. Hold the position for 15 seconds. Use the left leg to push the right knee towards the floor until you feel a good stretch. Pushy our knee as close to the floor as you can. Hold the stretch for about 15 seconds, then carry out this exercise using right leg over the left knee.

Do this exercise the same way at all levels.

PRONE LIFT

This exercise strengthens your back muscles.

Turnover on your stomach and place a firm cushion under your pelvis and lower abdomen. Tighten your buttocks and try to hold a pelvic tilt. Slowly lift your head and chest off the floor. Hold this position for 5 seconds. Then let yourself down slowly and relax completely.

  • Level 1: Keep your arms on your sides. Continue to breathe normally during this exercise. Do not hold your breath.
  • Level 2 : Extend your arms straight in front. Hold for 5seconds.
  • Level3 : Put your hands behind your head. Hold for 5seconds.

Repeat this procedure two more times

SEATED LUMBAR FLEXION

This exercise stretches you r lower back.
Move into a sitting position. Put your soles together and let your knees fall apart, wide enough to let your upper body come through.

Do this exercise the same way at all levels

With outstretched arms, slowly bend forward from the hips as far as you can without pain. Imagine as if you are reaching for a handle just beyond the tip of your fingers. Feel the stretch in your back. Hold on to this position for 15 seconds, then return to the upright position and relax completely.

Repeat this procedure one more time

HAMSTRING STRETCH

This exercise stretches the muscles on the back of your thighs.
Straighten your left leg in front of you with your knee firmly on the floor and your toes pointed straight up.  Bend your right leg 50 that the sole of the right foot is touching the inside of the left knee. Hold on to this position for 15 seconds.

Slowly bend from the hips and reach out to your left foot with both the hands until you feel a good stretch in the back of your thigh bend without pain.

Hold on to this position for 15 seconds.

Slowly return to the upright position and relax. Then switch sides and stretch the other thigh. Put your right leg straight ahead with your knee flat on the floor and toes pointed up. Bend the left leg so that, the sole of that foot is against the right knee. Hold on to this position for 15 seconds. Then bend forward from the hips as far as you can without pain. Hold that stretch for 15 seconds. Then return to the resting position.

Repeat this procedure one more time on each side
Do this exercise the same way at all levels

EXTENSIOI\I EXERCISES

Another group of exercises, known as "extension" exercises, may help people suffering from back pain. However, certain medical conditions that cause back pain can be aggravated by these exercises, so they should be done with caution. The following guidelines should be followed carefully while performing these exercises. If you are being treated for back pain, you should discuss these exercises with your physician or physical therapist before doing them.

  • While doing these exercises, you may initially experience a mild increase in pain at the same location where you felt it before beginning the exercises. If the pain continues to become more severe after this initial mild increase, or if it begins to spread towards your buttocks or abdomen or down your legs, stop exercising immediately and contact your physician.
  • If the pain worsens after you complete the exercises and remains that way, do not repeat the exercises. Discuss the problem with your physician.
  • Perform all the movements very slowly.

EXERCISE-l

Lie down flat on the ground with your buttoks facing the roof. Rest your arms alongside your body with your cheek touching the floor. Use the deep-breathing technique to relax yourself and release all the tension from the muscles in your lower back. Hold this position for at least 2 minutes (you may hold it for 5 minutes aIso). If you are comfortable and have time, you can do this exercise up to six times a day.

EXERCISE-2

Lie down with your face down in a resting position. Take a few deep breaths to completely relax and release the tension in the muscles of your lower back. Slide your forearms forward until your elbows are under your shoulders. Then slowly raise your upper body, as far as you can without greatly increasing your pain. Hold that position for at least two minutes as you perform the deep breathing relaxation technique. You may hold the position longer if you are comfortable and you have time. Then slowly lower your body to the ground and allow yourself to relax completely. You may perform this exercise up to
six times a day.

EXERCISE-3

Lie down with your face on the floor and place your hands under your shoulders. Slowly straighten your arms to raise the upper half of your body as far as you can without greatly increasing your pain. Relax your buttocks, pelvis, hips and legs completely, and then let your back sag. Hold this sagging position for about 2 seconds (you may hold it longer if it reduces your pain) and then lower yourself very slowly to the floor. You may repeat this movement up to ten times per session, for up to six sessions per day. Each time you do this exercise, try to push yourself a little higher, but only if it does not increase your pain.

EXERCISE-4

You can use this exercise as an alternate for Exercise - 3 only if your are unable to exercise in lying down position. Stand up with your feet approximately shoulder width apart. Put you r hands on the small of your back, with your fingers pointing towards the centre of your back and your thumbs pointing forward. Keeping your knees straight, very slowly bend your body backward from the waist against your hands. Bend as far as you can without greatly increasing the pain and hold on to that position for about  2 seconds (you may hold longer if it reduces your pain) You may repeat this movement up to ten times per session, for up to six sessions per day. Every time you do this exercise, try to bend your back a little further, but only if it does not increase your pain.


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