While there are many contributing factors to back pain, a lack of core muscle strength can be a contributing factor to such discomfort, especially with lower back pain. According to the leading board-certified orthopedic surgeons in Beverly Hills, making an effort to build core strength among the muscles that support most of your body’s weight may help reduce your lower back pain to the point where it can be better managed, or even eliminated.
Core strengthening exercises can address issues with spinal alignment that often contribute to lower back pain. Even though your abdominal muscles are in the front, weak muscles in this area can make your spine work harder to compensate for the lack of support, resulting in misalignment.
Strengthening your core muscles doesn’t have to be relegated to exercises you can do in a gym. If you spend a lot of time sitting at a deck, taking breaks to stretch or get up and walk can help strengthen and stretch the muscles that support your back.
Focusing too much on one set of muscles can result in muscle strain. Ideally, all core muscles, which include the transverse abdominal muscles and internal and external obliques, should be stimulated equally.
Not all strengthening exercises are good for back pain. Toe touches, for instance, can place excessive strain on your lower spine. The same is true with sit-ups, which can place added pressure on the discs cushioning your vertebrae. Instead, consider the following core strengthening exercises to minimize your lower back pain:
• Torso rotations to reduce muscle strain • Hamstring stretches that should produce a gentle stretch felt along the back of your leg • Partial crunches to strengthen stomach and back muscles • Repetitive knee-to-chest stretches, often recommended if you have some degree of spinal stenosis
Before starting any exercise program or workout routine, check with your doctor first. Consider working with a fitness trainer who has experience with core strengthening for back pain or seeking input from a physical therapist. You’ll typically have a thorough functional assessment to determine what types of exercises are best for you when working with a trainer.
For individuals living with chronic pain, it may be time to speak with a specialist who can diagnose the root of your pain and discuss your options for back or spine surgery in Los Angeles. Call (310) 828-7757 and request an in-person consultation with an experienced spine surgeon at The Spine Institute Center for Spinal Restoration.