Having back pain can be quite limiting when it comes to day-to-day activities. Feeling too uncomfortable to walk, run, and sleep can make one feel restricted and frustrated, so looking for appropriate treatment should be among top priorities. However, incorporating some exercises can always be of great help, so if you’re constantly struggling with pack pain, even when taking medication, there’s a chance that you could benefit from exercising. Still, before you decide to start working out, you should aim to get informed, because some exercise can be quite dangerous if not done correctly. Hence, here is a mini-guide that can help you relieve your back pain and change your health for better.
Back pain — symptoms and causes
Back pain is one of the most common health ailments, which has got way worse due to a sedentary lifestyle. The main symptoms are stabbing pain, muscle ache, and pain that radiates down the leg or worsens with body movements. There are multiple causes of back pain: some are quite insignificant such as waking up after sleeping in a bad position, while others can be quite worrying, mainly arthritis, osteoporosis, muscle/ligament strain, and ruptured disks.
When to see a doctor
If you’ve been feeling unwell lately, it would be advisable to talk to your doctor first, mainly if you’ve been dealing with serious back issues for quite some time, or you’ve undergone a back surgery or any other invasive treatment. If that’s the case, then your back pain could be a sign of an underlying issue that definitely needs immediate medical attention. Additionally, if your pain doesn’t go away after continuous rest and other treatments, then it’s essential to take further measures to alleviate the pain and recover.
Why is exercise so beneficial?
Before we delve any further, let’s answer the most important question: why is exercise so beneficial? Well, for starters, exercises require a lot of stretching, and stretching can help improve the quality of muscles and ease the pain. But, before you decide to start exercising, you should make sure to learn about different types of workouts and their intended effect on one’s body and psyche. That way you’ll be able to choose those that specifically fit your needs. Aside from that, regular exercise can improve heart conditions and reduce risks of stroke, diabetes, and cancer, while also contributing to better mental health and emotional stability.
The way regular exercise helps the back
Now that we’ve established the benefits of exercise, it’s essential to examine the way regular physical activity can help the back. As it’s been mentioned before, stretching is a huge part of every workout routine, as it prevents sore muscles, and consequently, lowers the body pain in the process. Additionally, focusing on back exercises can reduce stiffness and if more you work on your mobility, then your connective fibers will tear less under stress, thus preventing back pain and injuries.
On another note, exercise can stretch, support, and repair muscles that support the back. Therefore, it’s important to focus on those types of exercises that support muscles and reduce stress imposed on the spinal cord and discs and joints. After some time of regular work out, your spinal alignment and posture will also improve, and you’ll also notice the ability to move, bend, and lift things without feeling pain.
The art of stretching
As stated before, stretching is a crucial element of every exercise routine. The proper warm-up can reduce post-exercise muscle soreness and other discomforts, so before you start running or weight lighting, you should aim to stretch properly, starting from your neck, up until your legs, and sometimes even toes. After finishing exercising, you should make sure to stretch again, because stretching can help you relax and calm yourself down after an intense workout.
So, which exercises should you do?
There are various exercises with different goals, so it’s important to determine which ones are right for you. For example bridges, leg raises, partial curls, knee rolls, and pelvic tilts are a great way to start reducing your back pain. If you fundamentally lack workout experience, then you should opt for gentle, slow exercises that won’t make your body tense. Make sure to do them as long as it feels comfortable because overworking your body can do more harm than good, especially if you’re just starting out your workout routine.
The latter is quite important to remember, and in that case, it’s also recommended hiring a personal trainer or even a physiotherapist, so you’ll be able to get the proper tips that will help you exercise properly. Doing things the wrong way can often cause more problems than solutions, so before laying down on the mat or signing up for a gym membership, it’s better to have an open discussion with one or two people who can show you how to exercise without risking any injuries and more pain.
Working out at the gym or at home — which one is better?
It is totally up to you, because either option is fine, as long as you’re following the orders from your doctor and/or personal trainer. A gym can be a great place to socialize and get motivated while working out at home can give you privacy and comfort because you won’t be able to compare yourself to others. Nonetheless, if you’re planning to exercise at home on a more permanent basis, it’s important to equip yourself with quality workout gear, so you won’t miss out on more challenging workouts. So, getting an adjustable sit up bench can seriously diversify your workout and improve your whole body posture and overall fitness level. Besides, using exercise machines can often be a much safer option than exercising on the floor, because you’re free to repeat the exercise while also minimizing the risk of injuries.
When everything else fails — do yoga
Working out can be a truly informative experience that cannot only fix your back issues but also boost your self-esteem. However, for some, exercising can be quite difficult or downright impossible, due to various reasons. But, that doesn’t mean that there is no solution for persistent back issues because doing yoga can be quite fulfilling and beneficial. Yoga might not seem like an exercise but as a matter of fact, it definitely counts as one, because there are different types of yoga, and some of them can be really demanding, such as Ashtanga, for example. Hence, if you’re toying with the idea of doing it, it’s essential to find your ideal yoga type so you’ll be able to reap all the benefits while working towards achieving better health.
Doing exercises can drastically reduce back pain, yet, it’s necessary to listen to your body and do things that are within your comfort zone. Also, be sure to talk to your doctor and if possible, hire a fitness trainer to show you the right way to exercise, because that’s the sure way to decrease the pain and see some achieve progress. Furthermore, opting for workout equipment and doing yoga can be welcome additions to your workout routine, so feel free to incorporate them as well, as long as you take care of yourself and do things that won’t jeopardize your well-being.