7 Exercises for Low Back Pain You Can Do At Home


5. Pelvic Lift With Bridge Pose

Performing pelvic lifts can help to strengthen the musculature in the lower back.

For this exercise, you’ll need a mat, a blanket, or a towel. You can choose to do to the exercise on the floor as well.

Here’s how to perform a pelvic lift:

  1. Lie on your back on your mat. Bring your knees flat on the floor and engage your abdominal muscles.  You should feel your back pressing into the mat.
  2. While keeping the abdomen engaged, slowly lift the pelvis off the mat. Lower back onto the mat.  Repeat eight to 10 times.

To make a pelvic tilt a bit more advanced, you can perform a setu bandha sarvangasana, or bridge pose. Here’s how to do bridge pose:

  1. Lie on your back on your mat. Bring your knees flat on the floor, about hip-width apart.  The arms should be alongside the body, fingertips grazing the heels.
  2. Ground the heels into the mat, then lift the hips off the mat. The knees should remain hip-width apart.
  3. Roll the shoulders underneath the back and clasp the hands underneath the hips.
  4. Engage the core while lifting the hips higher.
  5. Hold the posture for four to eight breaths.

6. Cat/Cow Yoga Pose

Yet another yoga pose, cat/cow helps to relieve low back pain by providing dynamic movement of the low back muscles.  It fuses two yoga poses – cat, marjaryasana, and cow, bitilisana, although we most commonly do them together and know it as ‘cat/cow.’

For this exercise, you’ll need a mat, a blanket, or a towel. You can choose to do to the exercise on the floor as well.

Here’s how to do cat/cow:

  1. Begin on your hands and knees on your mat (tabletop).
  2. Arch your back towards the ceiling. Drop your gaze to your mat and your hips to your mat.  This is the ‘cat’ portion of the pose.  Hold for five seconds, or a breath or two.
  3. Relax your back, letting your abdominal muscles drop towards the mat. Bring your gaze and your hips towards the ceiling.  This is the ‘cow’ portion of the pose.  Hold for five seconds, or a breath or two.
  4. Cycle through cat/cow for thirty seconds or so – although it feels so good, you may want to keep going!

7. Child’s Pose

For all the yogis out there, child’s pose is familiar because it is the pose for active relaxation and rest.  We use child’s pose when we need to take a moment to breathe, to rest, when a posture or sequence gets difficult.  However, it can also be extremely functional for a low back practice.

This posture is a great way to end your exercise practice – it can allow you to take a moment to rest, but it also stretches the muscles of the lower back.

For this exercise, you’ll need a mat, a blanket, or a towel. You can choose to do to the exercise on the floor as well.

Here’s how to perform child’s pose:

  1. Begin on your hands and knees on your mat (tabletop).
  2. Reach forward with your hands, towards the front of your mat. Place your palms flat on the mat, then drop your hips towards your heels.
  3. Your head will fall in between your arms, towards the mat
  4. If your lower back hurts in this posture, widen the knees to allow for more room for your belly. You can also place a block under your belly for more support.
  5. Allow yourself to rest in child’s pose for at least 30 seconds, but as long as you’d like.

The Bottom Line…

Treating our low back pain is a multimillion-dollar industry. However, if we can be proactive about it – like using the above exercises for lower back pain suggestions, practicing proper posture, and being mindful of our bodies – we can save ourselves numerous amounts of dollars, missed time from work, and even better, treat our own back pain in the process.

Resources

American Chiropractic Association (Back Pain Facts and Statistics)

Hugger Mugger (Parsva Balasana: Bird Dog Pose)

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (Low Back Pain Fact Sheet)

Prevention (5 Stretches to Ease Your Lower Back Pain)

Yoga Basics (Bridge)

WebMD (Good and Bad Exercises for Low Back Pain)

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