Category Archives: stretches for lower back pain

Essential stretches for lower back pain – hamstring stretches – active sitting part VII

Stretches for lower back pain include hamstring stretches.

Stretches for lower back pain are just as important for a healthy back as stomach and back strengthening exercises. Many people don’t realise how important leg strength, flexibility and mobility are for the back. In order to be able to move in a back friendly way, we need to keep the legs strong and flexible. Prolonged sitting often results in shortened hamstrings. As a result the muscles balance that keeps the back healthy and upright gets disturbed. This can result in back pain. Stretches for lower back pain include leg stretches such as the hamstring stretch. Stretches for lower back pain also include the hip flexor stretch we introduced in the last post. As with hip flexor stretches we encourage you to stretch the hamstrings on a regular basis, too.

Hamstring Stretch
stretches for lower back pain - hamstring stretch - back strengthening exercises

1. Start by sitting on the exercise ball. Straighten out one leg in front of you.
2. Hold onto the table.
3. Keeping the back straight, bring the chest towards the leg, lean forward with the upper body. You should feel a stretch in the hamstring of the straight leg. Hold this position for 10 seconds.
• Repeat stretch 3 times on each leg

Variation for Calf Muscles:
1. Repeat the previous exercise, but when you lean forwards towards the straight leg, pull the toes towards the shin. Feel how the stretch moves into the calf muscles.
• Repeat stretch 3 times on each leg

The following exercise will exercise your legs, stomach and back at the same time. Keep you stomach muscles tight throughout the exercise.

1. Have your knees at least shoulder width apart, place your ankles directly beneath your knees on the floor.
2. Place your hands on the edge of the table and lift your bottom of the ball, keeping the knees over the ankles. • Repeat 3 to 5 times

Variation for strength:
1. As before have your knees over your ankles and bring your upper body forward.
2. Place your hands on the outside of the ball next to your hips.
3. Bring your upper body forward until you are able to lift your bottom off the top of the ball. Check your knees are still above your ankles. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds.
• Repeat 3 to 5 times

Essential stretches for lower back pain – hip flexor stretch – active sitting part VI

The hip flexor stretch is one of the essential stretches for lower back pain.

In the pervious posts we mostly looked at stretches and back strengthening exercises in particular for the up back, neck and shoulders. Today you will be introduced to the hip flexor stretch an essential in the stretches for lower back pain. Hip flexors are those muscles that flex (= shorten the distance between two body parts) the legs towards the hips, they bend the leg towards the upper body. This movement happens in the hip joints. Hip flexors are very strong muscles because we use them all the time. Strong muscles tend to be short. Problem with the hip flexors can arise when they become too short. Then they can exasperate many back problems because they pull the pelvis forward and arch the lower back. We will examine this in detail in a later post. When you sit in work all day, your hip flexor is kept short. It is a good idea to do a hip flexor stretch at least once a day. Of all the exercises when engaging in back strengthening exercises in particular, this stretch is extremely valuable. It is one of the most valuable stretches for lower back pain. It makes any back strengthening exercises much more effective. It can greatly help to alleviate lower back pain.

Hip flexor stretch:

stretches for lower back pain - hip flexor stretches - active sitting
1. Stand up and hold on to the table top.
2. Clench your gluteus muscles and pull you stomach in while maintaining your breathing.
2. Bend both knees slightly.
3. Standing on one leg lift the other ankle onto the ball, keeping the knees together.
4. Keeping the standing leg slightly bent, straighten out the other leg over the ball and backwards. You should feel a stretch in the groin and thigh. Hold this position for 20-30 seconds.
• Repeat stretch on both sides

Are you looking for Back Strengthening Exercises?

On this site you will find a comprehensive back strengthening exercises program. Next to back strengthening exercises we include stretches and mobility exercises for the back in particular stretches for lower back pain and neck tension. We have been teaching this program for over fifteen years. Our back strengthening exercises have helped our program participants to reduce and eliminate their back problems.

We also have found in order to get rid of back pain and other back problems people need to know what causes them. When you know how your back problems are caused you can learn to prevent them. You will also know what kind of back strengthening exercises are good (see our movement and exercise guidelines). You quickly realise that some so called back exercises are not so good. Unfortunately there are a lot of back damaging activities and exercise programs out there claiming to be good for the back. Once you know how to avoid back damaging activities you can re-engage because you will know how to do these activities in a way that they don’t cause you problems.

Back strengthening exercises are a really good idea and a lifestyle choice if you have an otherwise sedentary lifestyle or are engaged in activities that caused your back problems. Sometimes it takes as little as 15 minutes of our back strengthening exercises every couple of days to balance out the acitivities of your life that might have caused you problems before.

All our participants have successfully got rid of their back problems. they are using our back strengthening exercise program. With it they have regained good core stability.

Core stability describes the correct functioning of those muscles, mainly the hips, stomach and back musculature, responsible for uprightness and stability of the upper body.

If muscles in your stomach are weak and/or your back muscles are tense and tight weakness in these areas can result in misalignment of the spine. This can cause discomfort and pain, often in the upper and lower back. It can also lead to increased wear and tear causing irreversible damage to the in the spine and nervous system.

Therefore a central part of the program we do is to provide exercises to re-establish and maintain a good muscle balance.

However, we strongly believe it is important to learn about good movement practices. That way we can ensure that not only is our exercise program is done correctly — but any other activity we engage in, too!

•information about the source of back problems and the structure and functionality of the spine

•simple guidelines on how to move in a back friendly way on a day-to-day basis and during exercising

•a comprehensive set of back strengthening exercises to re-establish a healthy musculature which supports the spine

Our back strengthening exercise program is for men and women of all ages. We use an exercise ball for many of the back strengthening exercises. Just sitting on a ball, much like you would sit on a chair is a back strengthening exercise.

active sitting - stomach exercises and back strengthening exercises for the ball

active sitting – stomach exercises and back strengthening exercises for the ball