Lifting. Core. Posture.
These are the three words you need to commit to memory when it comes to preventing lower back pain.
Many issues can cause lower back pain. Lifting heavy objects correctly, exercising your core and maintaining good posture are the three key parts of having a healthy spine. If you want to prevent lower back pain, then this article is for you. Take a moment to read through some key tips to help you avoid back pain.
Don’t get bent out of shape trying to lift heavy objects
Incorrectly picking up heavy objects is one of the quickest ways to hurt your lower back. The following steps will help you pick up objects correctly and prevent lower back pain:
- Use your knees and hips. Do not bend over to pick something up. When using your knees and hips to lift a heavy object, you are placing the strain on your larger leg muscles instead of your back. Your lifting form should look like a squat, with your back straight and your knees aligned over top of your ankles.
- Hold the object close. Keep the object close to your chest to help your spine stay straight. Moving the object away from your body may cause your lower back to arch in order to counterbalance the weight of the object. A bent spine can become a hurt spine very quickly.
- Keep your shoulders straight. You can hurt your back by twisting while carrying heavy objects. Keep your shoulders square and lead with your chest while walking with a heavy object in your arms.
Engage your core to keep a healthy spine
Your spine is surrounded by core muscles to help keep you upright. No, you don’t need six-pack abs, but following these light exercises will help keep your core muscles engaged and your back happy:
- Wall-sits — Timed wall-sits keep your back straight and relaxed while making your legs and core do the work.
- Knee-to-chest — Lie on your back and pull one of your knees to your chest. Switch knees. This is another good way to strengthen your core without adding stress to your spine.
- Partial crunches — Don’t do full-on sit-ups or big crunches that stress your back. Small, partial crunches are enough to engage your core without straining your spine.
Fight lower back pain with correct posture
Are you sitting right now? Have you been sitting for a while? Then stop, stand up and walk around for a few minutes.
If you spend most of your day in a chair, it’s best to get up, stretch and walk every half hour or so. This re-engages unused muscles and promotes healthy spinal alignment. Stand up straight and keep your ears, shoulders and hips aligned, one on top of the other. This posture is important to maintain while sitting, too.
Getting help for lower back pain
Even if you do your best to prevent back pain, you may develop pain and need professional help.
Our team of trained experts at Arrow Physical Therapy is here to help reduce your pain so you can begin to feel better. We have offices available in the areas of Edison, Woodbridge and Union. If you’re ready to start treating your lower back pain, contact Arrow Physical Therapy today.