In order to maintain a strong body and overall health, it is important to take part in a regular exercise regimen. Exercise can help to reduce your risk of developing heart disease while also helping to maintain the health of your spine. However, there are some exercises that can actually do more damage than good to your spine, especially if you're experiencing back pain. Here are three exercises that will cause more back pain and three alternative exercises that are much more suitable:
Bad Exercise #1: Sit-Ups
In order to support your spine, you need strength in your core. Most people tend to think about sit-ups when they need to do an abdominal exercise. However, sit-ups may actually put strain on your spine, discs and lower back because you use your hip muscles.
Good Exercise #1: Pelvic Tilts
Pelvic tilts are a much safer exercise for strengthening your core while keeping your back in good shape than sit-ups. You will still bend your knees and lie on your back. You will then want to tighten the muscles in your abs while pressing your back into the floor. This position should be held for roughly 10 seconds. Try to repeat as many times as you can.
Bad Exercise #2: Overhead Weight Training
While weight lifting over your head can help improve the strength of your shoulders, it is also known to compress your spine. Therefore, overhead lifting should be avoided if at all possible.
Good Exercise #2: Lateral Raises
Luckily, there is a similar exercise that you can do that will not put strain on your back. Lateral raises involve using a lightweight pair of dumbbells. You will hold them in front of you and slightly bend your elbows. Next, you will raise both of your arms up and out. You will stop when you reach the height of your shoulders. Return to your starting position and repeat several times.
Bad Exercise #3: High-Impact Aerobics
When taking part in high-impact aerobics, such as tennis or running, you can jar your spine, which doesn't do you any favors in the pain department.
Good Exercise #3: Low-Impact Aerobics
Instead of high-impact aerobics, you should choose low-impact activities, such as swimming or walking. These physical activities will put less stress on your back, which will then help to reduce your pain.
These exercises should help in reducing the pain in your back without taking the risk of causing more pain or damage in the process. If your back pain is constant or recurring, it is a good idea to consult with a physician. There may be something larger going on that these fitness regimen changes cannot fix. Depending on the underlying issue, you may require back surgery, from places like Highlands Neurosurgery, P.C., which can be non-invasive thanks to today's technology.