Art, Bud and I have all struggled with back pain at various times in our lives. I have arthritis in my sacroiliac joints. Art has a pinched nerve that plagues him on and off. Bud has suffered the aches and pains that come with being an active teenager and young adult.
Through advice from our doctors, tips from friends, family, and the internet, and lots of trial and error, we have picked our favorite back pain prevention tips. Here they are:
- Maintain (or gain) core strength.
Core muscles include your hips, abdominals and back. A few really good exercises to keep your core strong are crunches, planks and pushups. Even if you’re not big on exercising, one important thing you can do to help maintain core strength is to keep your abdominal muscles pulled in as much as possible.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
The more weight you carry, the more pressure you are putting on your spine. If you are overweight, losing even just a few pounds could make a significant difference in your back pain.
- Get regular aerobic exercise.
Low impact aerobic exercises like walking, swimming, cycling, elliptical and stepping can help condition your back, as well as releasing endorphins that aid in both pain relief and elevating your mood.
- Learn (and use) proper posture and bending techniques.
When standing – Your feet should be roughly shoulder width apart. Your knees and hips should be in line with the middle of your feet. Your torso should be balanced over your hips neither leaning forward nor backwards. Your shoulders should be back and your chest held out. Your head should be upright with your chin slightly elevated.
When sitting – Your feet should be flat on the floor with your knees at a right angle. Your shoulders (if possible) and butt should stay against the back of the seat. Your back and neck should be in line with your pelvis.
When bending – Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Bend your knees, but keep your back straight. Keep your abdominal muscles pulled in and if you are lifting, lift with your legs.
- Stretch regularly
Try some of the exercises at dailyhealthypost.com.
Of course if you experience any sharp or long-term back pain, please consult your doctor.