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Exercises To Reduce Lower Back Pain

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Lower back pain can have a lot of different causes-bad lifting habits, poor seating, poor posture, driving, stress, even bad shoes. It can be as serious as a herniated disc or other spinal problems, but more often than not its the result of the lumbar muscles going into spasm to try and compensate for a misalignment of the spinal column.

Its important to remember that the lumbar muscles and the abdominal muscles work together to keep the spine supported, and that strength and flexibility of both sets of muscles is important.
There are some fairly easy exercises to reduce lower back pain and help with strength and flexibility both; they dont require any special equipment, and you can exercise to reduce lower back pain for only twenty or so minutes a day:

• Abdominal Contractions: Lie on your back with your knees bent and your hands on your belly, below your rib cage. Tighten your upper abdominal muscles to squeeze your ribs down toward your back. Be sure to keep breathing and don’t hold your breath! Hold for five seconds. Relax in between contractions, and repeat ten times.

• Heel Raises: Stand about a foot in front of a wall. Put your hands against the wall, and slowly stand up on your tiptoes. Hold for five seconds. Repeat ten times.

• Hip Flexor Stretch: Lie on your back near the edge or end of your bed, holding knees to chest. Slowly lower each leg down, keeping the knee bent, until you feel a stretch across the top of your hip/thigh. Hold for 20 seconds, and then relax. Repeat five times on each side.

• Hamstring Stretch: Lie on your back with knees up. Hold one thigh behind knee and slightly below. Slowly straighten leg out until you feel a stretch in the back of your thigh. Hold for 20 seconds, and then repeat with other leg. Repeat five to ten times with each leg.

• Wall Squats: With your back leaning against wall, walk your feet out about 12 inches in front of your body. Keep abdominal muscles tight, and slowly bend both knees 45 degrees. Hold for five seconds, and slowly return to upright position; repeat ten times.

• Medicine Ball: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold a medicine ball, light dumbbell or even a gallon jug of milk with both hands above waist level, a few inches away from your belly. Pivot your torso back and forth while making sure to keep your hips and legs straight.

• Lumbar Stabilization: Get on hands and knees on the floor. Extend your right leg and left arm out straight; hold for five seconds. Repeat for left leg and right arm. Repeat each five to ten times.

• Single Knee to Chest Stretch: Lie on your back with both knees bent. Hold thigh behind knee, and bring knee up towards chest as far as you can go. Hold for 20 seconds, relax and repeat with other leg. Repeat 5 to 10 times with each leg.

There are many exercises to reduce lower back pain that can be done in the comfort of your own home without the need for medications.

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