Back Pain is one of the most common health problems, and a top reason people worldwide miss work or go to the doctor. The symptoms usually include muscle ache, pain that radiates down one leg, pain that worsens with movement, and shooting or stabbing. Back pain will usually improve if you are in a reclined position but then come right back once you stand back up. The goal is to prevent it altogether, so read further for a few tips to help create a healthy, strong back.
#1 Strength & Flexibility
Do your best to strengthen your core; you can look at our post “Three Exercises to Strengthen Your Core” for some additional tips. By doing this, it builds a natural corset that helps keep your back in order. Flexibility is key as it helps keep your hips and legs aligned with your pelvic therefore improving your back. To improve flexibility, it is recommended that you implement a stretching routine, and in a short time, you will see an improvement.
Low impact activities that don’t strain your back, such as hiking, walking, or swimming, are a good place to start. Make exercise a regular part of your daily routine. This will increase strength in your back and help you feel better. If your back pain is serious, check with your doctor about what activities are best for your personal situation.
Lifting is where some back problems start or first get noticed. Use your legs and knees to lift, not the back. If you need to lift something heavy, keep your back straight and no turning or twisting. If possible, find another person to help with those heavy objects and save your back the strain.
#4 Sitting Posture
If you sit a lot, ergonomics is key. Think about your posture and the chair your sitting in. You want something with armrests that swivels and that supports your low back. Sometimes rolling up a towel and placing it in the low back area of your chair will help. Make sure to get up regularly and take breaks.
When standing, always pay attention to your posture, don’t slouch, and try to keep your back in an upright straight position. Regularly adjust your weight so that you put it on each foot. You can also try to lift one foot onto a higher surface then switch feet often. The better posture, you have less strain on your back.
Being overweight puts extra stress on your back muscles and weakens your core. In most cases, simply losing a few pounds will improve your back pain, especially in your lower back. This is a catch 22; your back hurts, so it’s hard to exercise to lose weight, but you need to lose weight to improve your back pain. Start slow with your diet, then build up with exercise.