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Achy Back? Strengthen Your Lower Back Anywhere

An achy back, is no unusual
experience. Regardless of the sport you practice, lower back pain is common
among all of them.   The need
to move through flexion and extension 
(bending forward and leaning back), lateral flexion (side bend movement)
and rotation (turning at the waist) is mandatory for sports and functional
movement throughout the day.   

Although I have provided you with a lot of detailed information below, it is important if you suffer from lower  back pain to understand its potential causes and methods of healing.  Lower back pain is absolutely manageable.  Especially if you have access to acupuncture, a chiropractor, napropath and massage therapist.  All of these forms of treatment are excellent in the management and methods of healing.


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Injuries
to the spine are complex, even for trained sports-medicine professionals.  However, there are a few key factors
that you can watch for which may be helpful in identifying a back injury and
would indicate the need for the care of a sports-medicine professional . The
following is a list of some of these symptoms:




v tingling or numbness in the
legs

v inability to move normally
due to stiffness or achiness 

v spasms

v lower extremity weakness

v increased lower back pain
from standing or sitting

An In-Depth Look at Lower Back Weakness 

Stability
training
is one fundamental method of exercise that can assist in preventing
back problems from occurring.  When taking a boxing class, swinging a golf club, sitting on your bike or picking up
your child, the back acts as a stabilizer ( and often performs pure flexion). 
If the abdominal muscles are weak or fail to tighten during these types
of movements, the back over-works and becomes fatigued.  Furthermore, lower back pain may occur
if the upper abdominals are significantly stronger than the lower abdominals.
The lower back erectors (erector spinae), the quadratus lumborum  and gluteals are groups of muscles that
act not only as stabilizers, but are often prime movers during most functional
and sport movement.  The strength
imbalance that often occurs in the trunk (abs, back, gluts, hips) can be
attributed to the lack of strength can be incorporated in personal training
programs.  Below are a couple of back
exercises that are so simple that they can even be added in before breakfast or
bed.  Although there are many exercises that are great in preventing back pain, I have given you two that are easy, will not cause you to sweat so they can be down anywhere and anytime.



            Tabletop or  Bridge - Place both hands and knees squarely on the ground.  While keeping your abs tight and your
pelvis neutral (no excessive arching or sagging), slowly lift the opposite arm
and leg off the ground.  Extend
both of them out while holding your head straight.  While lifting the arm and leg, squeeze your glut and do not
allow your hips to tilt.  They
should be square with the ground. 
Do slow reps (10) at 2 -3 sets, two or three times per week.  You can simplify this by lifting only
the leg.

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Make sure you avoid sticking your belly out when holding this position.

            

Swimmers
- Lay flat on the floor on your stomach. 
Fully extend your arms and legs. 
While keeping your forehead flat on the ground, slowly lift the opposite
arm and leg off the ground.  Do not
bend the knee, imagine someone trying to pull your shoe off your foot as you
lift the leg.  Your hips should be
pressed on the ground and your gluts should be tighten.  Do  not kick the leg up. 
(The movement is similar to the doggie bridges)  Do 10 reps slowly at 2 - 3 sets, two or
three times per week.

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This is a good starting position for the swimmers. It eliminates the arms. When you feel ready add the arms, by extending them overhead and lengthen them.  








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