Living With Back Pain

Exercise For Back Pain Relief

People often have a misconception that exercise should be avoided when experiencing back pain as it would worsen the pain, but the fact is that exercise and movement are the natural stimuli for the healing process. Gradual, controlled and progressive exercise provides long term solutions for reducing and preventing back pain which can not be done by inactivity and bed rest. Exercise helps in alleviating back problems by nourishing and repairing spinal structures and by keeping the anatomy of the back healthy, flexible and strong.

Engaging in exercise keeps the back healthy by allowing discs to exchange fluids which is how the discs receive nutrition. Similar to the action of a sponge, a healthy disc swelled with water will squeeze out. This action distributes nutrients to the discs and helps in reducing swelling in other soft tissues surrounding injured discs. However, lack of exercises increases swelling making the discs malnourished and degenerated. Back exercise reduces stiffness by keeping the connective fibers of ligaments and tendons flexible thus preventing them from tearing under stress, which in turn prevents injury and back pain.

Active forms of back pain exercises are essential to rehabilitate the spine and alleviate back pain. Some of the most commonly used and recommended exercises for back pain are as follows:
Stretching exercises: Stretching the soft tissues like muscles, tendons and ligaments in the back is very beneficial for reducing your pain. Limitations in the motion of spinal column and its muscles, ligaments and tendons can accentuate back pain. Stretching exercise may take few weeks or months for mobilizing the spine and soft tissues but is sure to come out with a sustained relief from back pain.
Hamstring exercises: People with tight hamstrings tend to have low back pain as hamstring tightness limits the motion in the pelvis thus increasing stress across the low back. In hamstring stretching exercise, pressure should be applied to lengthen the hamstring muscle for 3o to 45 seconds at a time, one or two times a day. The pressure on the muscle should be applied evenly avoiding bouncing as bouncing motion will trigger a spasm response in the muscle being stretched. With time the hamstring muscle slowly lengthens, reducing stress of the lower back.

Some of the other exercises include:

Lumbar extension strength training: These exercises strengthen the abdomen, improve lower back strength, mobility and endurance. Thus enhancing flexibilty in the hips and hamstring muscles.
Low impact aerobic exercises: Exercises like walking and swimming help in strengthening muscles in the abdomen and back without putting pressure on the back.
Yoga, tai chi, chi kung: They help in achieving a physical and mental balance for reducing the pain
Restraining deep muscles: Some contraction exercises help in restraining the muscles which proves effective for back pain sufferers.

Exercise is always said to be a part of healthy living. If you incorporate it in your daily routine, you are sure to derive other benefits as well. Then why not do it today itself!