How to Safely Exercise with a Bad Back

The right exercise will help your back heal. The wrong exercise will make it worse. Fortunately, there are lots of exercises that are safe to do with a bad back.

It is always wise to consult your Tampa doctor or physical therapist before commencing exercise while suffering from back pain. They may recommend a specific regiment targeted for your individual needs.

Warming Up

While it is always important to warm up prior to exercise, it is absolutely crucial if you experience back pain. Do some flexing and stretching for at least five minutes prior to starting formal exercise.

A healthy warm up increases oxygen and blood flow to your back muscles, preparing them for more sustained exercise.

Low Impact Aerobic Exercises

Low impact aerobic exercises are the best exercises for back pain sufferers. If you have not been engaging in many exercises prior to hurting your back, low impact aerobic exercise is a good way to get started. Walking and swimming are probably the best low impact aerobic exercises for people with back pain. If you are a jogger, switch to walking until your back is fully healed or your doctor gives the go ahead.

The impact of running on a hard surface worsens back pain. If you enjoy cycling, go ahead, but you may want to switch from a standard bicycle to a bike with a backrest, known as a recumbent bike.

An elliptical machine offers another source of low impact exercise. It does not stress the back the way other gym equipment may do. Just make sure to retain good posture – always important when dealing with back pain – while using the elliptical.

Exercises to Avoid

Certain exercises exacerbate back pain, so it is important to avoid them. These include:

  • Touching your toes – avoid any exercise requiring stretching without leg bending
  • Leg raises
  • Crunches
  • Sit-ups
  • Overhead shoulder press
  • Treadmill – hamstring tension can harm the back
  • High-impact aerobic exercises

Try Yoga

Yoga offers lumbar, or lower, back pain relief. It also aids in strengthening the abdominal core. If you have the option, try hot yoga rather than standard yoga. Hot yoga is simply a class held in an overly heated room.

It does not sound comfortable, but the heat helps your muscles loosen up and makes performing exercises easier. Have water available to keep yourself hydrated.

Contact Today

If you suffer from back pain, call skilled doctors in Tampa today and arrange a consultation.