1. Knees to Chest Stretch
This one is fairly self-explanatory, and also very easy to do. However, while this exercise is a simple one, it is also highly effective at preventing lower back pain. Begin by lying on your back with your knees raised and your feet flat on the floor. Raise one leg toward your chest until you can grasp it with your hands just below the knee.[ Read: 5 Simple ways to deal with body odour totally]
2. Child’s Pose
This common yoga pose not only helps to alleviate back pain but also helps with sacroiliac instability, which can aid in the prevention of sciatica. According to Anne Asher, using a pillow between your thighs and lower legs during the pose and spending only a few moments at a time in child’s pose will relax tension around the sacroiliac area.
3. Seated Piriformis Stretch
The piriformis muscle, as mentioned above, can become sore or tight, causing lower back pain and possible sciatica. This usually occurs due to sitting for long periods of time. However, stretching the piriformis muscle can aid in the prevention of lower back and leg pain. The seated piriformis stretch is a simple, low impact stretch that benefits the hidden muscles. [Read: 10 Ways To Avoid Getting Into A Relationship That Won’t Last]
To do this stretch, seat yourself on the floor and cross your left leg over your right thigh. Keep your left foot next to your right thigh and pull your right foot in toward your buttocks. Brace your left leg with your right arm and rotate slowly to your left, being sure not to overextend. Hold the stretch for about 20 seconds then switch sides.[Read: 10 Natural Ways on How to get a Bigger Boobs]
4. Cat-cow Stretch
This is yet another yoga pose that can help to alleviate or prevent lower back pain from developing. Because this stretch acts as both a flexion and an extension, it is especially useful for spinal and pelvic realignment, according to Elizabeth Quinn at Very Well Fit. [Read: 9 Ways To Get Over The Pain Of Loving Someone You Can’t Have]
To perform the cat-cow stretch, start on your hands on the knees on the floor. Slowly begin to contract your abdominal muscles, as if trying to pull your belly button toward the ceiling. Allow your head to drop and your pelvis to curl under. Hold this pose for about ten seconds before returning to starting position then letting your stomach drop toward the floor, arching your back as you do so. Repeat about five times.
5. Kneeling Lunge Stretch
You may have noticed that a lot of these stretches utilize your legs, and this is for a good reason. Lower back pain can often be caused by pelvic pain, which can be attributed to, as mentioned before, piriformis syndrome or sciatica. Working to strengthen your hips can be greatly beneficial to aiding in lower back pain. [Read: 5 Reasons Your Breasts Are Aching]
To perform a kneeling lunge stretch, start by kneeling on the floor, then move one of your legs forward so your foot is flat on the floor, in a typical lunge position. Then place both hands on your thigh and slowly lean your upper body forward. You’ll be able to feel a stretch in your other leg. According to Jonas J. Gopez, MD, writing for Spinal-Health, this stretch affects the hip flexor muscles and can promote better posture.
6. Lying Knee Twist
This stretch can not only help with lower back pain but according to Meghan Rabbitt at Prevention, it can also strengthen your glutes, which can become tight when you are experiencing lower back pain, thus exacerbating your condition.
To perform the lying knee twist, lie on your back with your knees raised, similar to the starting position for the knee-to-chest exercise. Extend your arms outward so you are in a ’T’ position, then slowly let your knees drop to one side, keeping your shoulders on the floor. Only go as far as your flexibility allows, making sure not to overextend. Hold the position for about 20 seconds, then repeat for the other side.
7. Supine Hamstring Stretch
Performing hamstring stretches, according to Jonas J. Gomez, MD, can help to lengthen the hamstring, thereby lowering tension on the lower back and aiding in the prevention of lower back pain forming as a result of muscle strain.
Start by lying down and raising your right knee toward your chest. Wrap a towel or other strap around the ball of your foot, and slowly straighten your leg toward the ceiling, extending through the heel. If you feel too much strain in your lower back, you can bend your left knee to ease the tension. You can also forego the towel and hold your leg behind the thigh, just above the knee.
8. Bridge Exercise
To perform the bridge exercise, lie on your back with your arms at your side and your knees raised. Then, tighten your abdominal muscles and use your hips to raise your butt off of the floor. Try not to overextend, and only go as high as your flexibility will allow. Hold the pose for about ten seconds before slowly lowering your hips back to the floor.