Developing strong core muscles can prevent back pain and help you maintain good posture. Unfortunately, your back and abdominal muscles weaken with age. Your ability to balance your body weight, perform exercises and everyday movements may become limited. To keep your back and waist strong, there are various exercises you can incorporate into your exercise routine.
Perform back extensions to tone your back muscles. Lie on your stomach on a stability ball. Stretch out your legs and spread them shoulder-width apart. Balance on the balls of your feet. Place your hands behind your head and look down to the floor. Raise you upper body upward, accentuating the natural curvature of your spine. Hold the contraction in your lower back for three seconds before returning to the starting position. Exhale on your way up and inhale on the way down. Perform two sets of 15 repetitions.
Work your back muscles by doing dead lifts. Position your feet hip-width apart. Hold dumbbells in your hands in front of your thighs. Face your palms toward your body. Bend at the waist and bring the dumbbells toward your feet. Keep your legs straight and your knees soft. Use your lower back muscles to slowly pull your body back up to the starting position. Start the exercise with no weights or light weights and increase the weight as you get stronger. Perform two sets of 10 to 12 repetitions.
Incorporate the cat and camel-back exercise into your workout routine. This exercise works both your abdominal muscles and back. Come down on all fours and look down toward the floor. Arch and round your back upward, as high as you can. Hold this position for five seconds before reversing the exercise by swaying your back downward. Hold this for five seconds before returning to the starting position. Repeat this five times and complete two sets.
Scoop your stomach to tighten your abdominal muscles. Lie on your back with your legs bent at the knees and your feet flat on the floor. Exhale and scoop in your stomach as if to pull your belly button toward your spine. Hold the stomach contraction as long as you can while breathing normally. Release the contraction and come back to the starting position. Perform eight repetitions and work your way up to holding the contraction for one minute.
Include upward crunches to target your abdominal muscles. Lie on your back with your legs in the air at a 90-degree angle. Bend your knees slightly. Raise your arms in front of your body and point your fingers towards your toes. Use your abdominals to lift your shoulder blades off the floor. Reach for your toes and lower your shoulder blades and shoulders back to the floor before repeating the exercise. Perform three sets of 12 repetitions.
Perform three sets of 12 twisting crunches. Lie on your back with your legs bent 90 degrees (achieved by placing your legs on a bench or stability ball). Cross you arms in front of your chest. Raise your upper body off the floor until the shoulder blades are lifted. Twist to the left as if to reach your right shoulder to your left knee. Lower back down and repeat the exercise on the opposite side.
- Prevention; Banish Back Fat; Denise Austin
- Exercise Perscription On The Net; Dumbbell Straight Leg Deadlift
- National Library Of Medicine; X-Pain Back Exercises
- Spine Health; Abdominal Exercises; Thomas E. Hyde
- Exercise Perscription On The Net; Crunch Up
- Exercise Perscription On The Net; Twisting Crunch (Arms Crossed)
- Photo Credit Pixland/Pixland/Getty Images
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