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How to Workout Despite Having Backpain

Back pain can hinder us from doing our typical routine, especially when we’re active people. The good news is that even if you’re having back pain, you can still be active. All you need to do is to know which exercises are right for you at the moment to avoid increasing the pain and more on alleviating the pain.

Over the past years, numerous studies have shown that physical activities aid in decreasing self-reported pain (back pain, arthritis, and osteoporosis), and weight-training programs are best to improve both short-term and long-term symptoms. In this article, we will be giving you some tips and dos and don‘ts when it comes to safe back pain exercise routines.


Working Out with Back Pain


We usually have two options when exercising and in pain: rest until better or pushes through the pain. But neither of these approaches is necessarily correct in every case. Your decision would solely depend on the following factors:

  • What’s causing your back pain (is ut’s caused by severe conditions like chronic diseases or spinal tumor then you are advised not to workout)

  • How active you have been leading up to the onset of back pain

  • Your pain symptoms such as when it occurs, where and for how long

This is actually backed up by studies saying that if you’re still active make sure you don’t stay sedentary even with a tight low back and inactivity can worsen back pain. That’s why Physical therapists recommend that you don’t stop your fitness routine altogether when you feel pain, instead perform light and steady activities.

Exercises to Do With a Bad Back

For people who want to push through and stay active despite the back pain they are feeling, your next question would be, “What’s the best exercise to safely stay active?”. Generally, back pain due to poor posture is a sign of weak muscles compressing the nerves and a sign of a misaligned spine that puts unnecessary pressure around the back. For these reasons, your Physical Therapists came up with different exercises to address these problems.


The best exercises you can do are:


  • Cardio Activities that are in Short sessions of a low-impact activity that are done multiple times a week can help with cardiovascular health and weight loss and reduce chronic back pain. Studies have found that water aerobics can help alleviate back pain better than no cardio activity.


  • Strength and weight training such as Lateral raises, Lateral pulldowns, Bench press, Leg press, Extensions, and curls. For bodyweight exercises, the safest ones are: Squats, lunges (forward and backward), and push-ups.


One of the best advice of Physical Therapists is to always tighten your abdominal muscles before exercising to protect your lower back and most importantly, to get a “go-signal” from your physician and PT before doing liftings.


  • Core Strength and Stability like Pelvic tilts, Bridges, Wall sits, Abdominal exercises using an exercise ball


  • Stretching is an essential part of working out with a bad back. Stretching out the tight hamstring, quad, and glute muscles can help relieve pressure from the low back. However, if you’re suffering from back pain, begin with light, easy stretching and perform stretches daily to reduce tightness gradually.

Some of the stretching exercises that work best for your back are: Hamstring stretches, knee-to-chest stretches, and back press-ups that press only your upper body off the floor.

Lower Back Pain Exercises to Avoid

here are some activities you’ll want to avoid with back pain:

  • Heavy weight lifting

  • Lifting objects overhead

  • High impact cardio like running or road cycling

  • Toe-touches and repeatedly bending over

  • Back extensions and hyperextensions

Staying active with the right workout regimen for your back pain can do wonders for your muscle strength and posture. For more information, you can always reach us here!


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