Strength Train to Relieve Back Pain

by Mackenzie M. | June 19th, 2012 | Strength Training

According to WebMD, about 25% of Americans are affected by back pain every year, and “they spend more time at the doctor’s office for back pain than for any other medical condition except high blood pressure and diabetes.”

To help get rid of this problem, many leading neuromuscular specialists are suggesting that patients experiencing back pain should seek out a physical therapist or sports medicine specialist who can give them an assessment of the strength of their back muscles. Simply making sure the back and core muscles are strong, or building them up to a healthy strength, has the ability to reduce or eliminate chronic back pain.

Several renowned neuromuscular therapists assert that postural alignment issues cause much of the back pain patients feel. If this is addressed early enough, future back pain can be avoided. Therapists have been working on a number of exercises for the back and the core that relieve and prevent back pain. Muscles that control stabilization of the body are key to preventing back pain, and many of these lie within the core region. Whereas running and other physical activities can put an intense amount of pressure on the spine, the core muscles and the glutes can act as a pad if strong enough.

Some of the best exercises for building core strength to prevent pain, as instructed by a medical director from Maryland, Michael Kelly, utilize both the core and the legs. Knees-to-chest exercises are particularly helpful for treating certain types of spinal issues. Lying on the back and pulling the knees in, opens up important space around the discs in the spine, which in turn relieves pressure on the nerves. This instantly eliminates some of the pain. Other exercise, such as lunges, sit-ups, and burpees also have a profound effect on back health. Even exercises such as yoga, pilates, and tai chi are highly recommended for pain relief. Most physical therapists recommend doing these abdominal core exercises for about 10-20 minutes per day. Not only will this help relieve back pain, it also helps build ab muscles.

When doing 10-20 minutes of these exercises, perform them in sets of three to five repetitions at least four days out of the week. Although some people have experienced instant relief from back pain, results can take up to six weeks. One of the other benefits of these exercises is that in about six weeks time, there should also be a noticeable difference in ab definition.

Before beginning a core strength routine to relieve back pain, be sure to consult with a physician or neuromuscular specialist. This is because although there are many exercises will help relieve back pain, there are an equal amount that can easily make the pain worse by damaging the spine further.

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All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.