Exercises For A Stiff Lower Back

Doctor Ben, Not A Real DoctorHey, everyone! Today I’m bringing you some exercises for a stiff lower back. It’s a relatively common problem in our modern lifestyles.  We spend too much time sitting.

Why Do You Have A Stiff Lower Back?

Because of all the time sitting lots of muscles tighten up. To fix this problem we need to spend a fair amount of time stretching and strengthening. Back pain can be caused by many things. Some areas to focus stretching are calves, hamstrings, glutes, and hip flexors.

I have a video series called the Squat Series where I cover a lot of stretches that can help lower back pain and stiffness. But there is a stretch that can help that I didn’t cover. The stretch for the hip flexors.

The Psoas

A major muscle that gets tight from long hours sitting is the psoas. This is a muscle that connects the upper leg bone, femur, to the spine. Because this muscle connects to the front of the spine it can actually pull the lower back out of alignment.

By getting this muscle back to a normal length, you can relieve some of this tension on the lower back and improve alignment in the spine. Even once this muscle is lengthened it’s important to keep it from shortening again. Sitting with proper spinal alignment is key. Don’t Be A Bag Of Bones is a short video that covers this.

The Stretch

So, onto the stretch already! We’re going to be doing a cobra stretch. Easy right? Lay on the ground and push your chest away while keeping your hips on the ground. Not so fast! There are a few points to keep in mind.

You have to think about lengthening your spine while you extend it. If you don’t do this your spine will bend unevenly. It designed to flex the same amount at each joint rather than a little or less along its length. Without this focus what usually happens is the lower back will extend a lot more than the rest of the spine.

Once you’re in a good stretch position take turns looking over each shoulder. This will emphasize the stretch on the opposite side. Hold the stretch for 1 to 2 minutes and do it often throughout the day!

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