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Exercise with Low Back Pain: A NO or a GO?

Mar 11, 2013

Do you suffer from low back pain? If so, then you are not alone. An estimated 80 percent of Americans will suffer from low back pain at some point in their life. It is the second leading cause of lost days at work, with the common cold being the number one reason. Low back pain is most common in adults, ages ranging from 30 to 50 years old. An estimated 85 billion is spent on treating low back pain annually.
If you answered yes to the first question then you may be asking yourself, how does this affect my exercising routine? First of all, know that by itself low back pain does not affect exercise; however, if you are exercising on your own at home you must know what exercises you shouldn’t do and which ones to modify.
Exercises to avoid when experiencing low back pain include:
• Full sit-ups with a straight leg or bent knee
• Leg raises
• Supermans
• Standing toe touches
Most of those exercises listed above put a lot of pressure on the discs in your spine which is exactly what you want to avoid when experiencing and treating low back pain.
Exercises recommended when experiencing low back pain include:
Pilates inspired exercises
• Modified Curl-Up
• Side Bridge
• Bird dog
Traditional strength exercises
• Squat with overhead resistance
• Back extension on a stability ball
• Single arm row
• Cable pull down
• Wall sits
Yoga inspired exercises
• Child’s pose
• Warriors
• Bridge
• Balance

Aerobic exercise is also very important to incorporate into your fitness routine when dealing with low back pain. It will help to strengthen your lungs, heart, and blood vessels as well as help you lose weight. Walking, swimming, and biking are the best types of aerobic exercise to help reduce low back pain.

Now that you know what exercises will help and what exercises will worsen your pain, get out there and start exercising. Don’t let low back pain stop you from living a happy, healthy life!


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