Chronic Low Back Pain Exercises


Several muscles, tendons, ligaments and small bones come together in the lower back. Various stresses, such as bad posture, repetitive movement and obesity, can cause chronic lower back pain, but several exercises can help mend the problem. Stretching and strengthening the muscles near the spine and abs will improve your posture and should improve the condition of your lower back.


  • Planks are an exercise that strengthens the front and back of your core. Lie on your stomach with your hands directly under your shoulders. Lift your body up in the air with your toes on the ground and your back straight. Lower yourself down on to your forearms and hold for 30 seconds. If this is too challenging, place your knees on the ground.

Hamstring Stretch

  • Tight hamstrings commonly cause lower back pain. To stretch them, lie on your back with your legs straight. Lift your right leg up and wrap your hands around it under the knee. Pull back toward your chest and try to straighten your leg. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, release and switch sides.

Knee Raise

  • Knee raises stretch the lower back muscles. Lie on your back with your legs straight out in front of you. Lift your right leg and and wrap your hands around it below your knee. With your knee bent, pull your leg in toward your chest as far as you can comfortably go. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, release and switch sides.

Alternating Extensions

  • To do alternating extensions, you need a stability ball. Lie across it with your back straight. Place your hands on the ground and walk them forward until the ball is at hip level. Extend your right arm straight out in front of you and your left leg straight out behind you. Lower them, then alternate arm and leg. Every time you lift them, try to get them in a straight line. Make sure to have the nonworking hand and foot touching the ground for balance. Do 10 to 12 reps.

Pelvic Tilts

  • Pelvic tilts are done from a lying position on the floor on your back. Place your hands under your head, bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor. From this position, push your lower back into the floor by contracting your abdominal muscles. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds and release.


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