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Resistance Training Eases Low Back Pain

Posted Dec 01 2009 10:06pm

Did you know that low back pain is second only to the common cold in reasons patients visit their doctors.  It is the 6th most costly medical condition in the United States, the second leading cause of disability, and the number one reason people miss work.  It is estimated that lifetime prevalence is 61%, yearly prevalence 44%, and point prevalence 22% in the population at large, states an article by Mackenzie in 2006, titled The Lumbar Spine: Mechanical Diagnosis and Therapy.

These statistics may appear scary, but low back pain is completely preventable if one engages in a consistent exercise and resistance training program.  The back muscles are considered to be in the core location of the body.  Thus, many muscle groups work in conjunction to help our body become strong and balanced, hence a strong core.

The following muscles have special emphasis in developing core strength.  They are recommended with various exercises for cardiovascular and strength training.
- Low Back- swimming, yoga poses, low back extension
- Rhomboids (good for thoracic posture)- Seated Row
- Latissimus dorsi (good for thoracic posture)- Lat Pulldown
- Quadriceps (good for balance)- squats, hiking, walking, running, biking, etc.
- Abdominals- a variety of crunches and trunk rotation exercises will address these muscles

Many of these muscles can be utilized from a variety of different exercises.  For more information on creating an effective back strengthening routine, you may want to consult with a personal trainer or yoga instructor.  In the meantime, starting off with regular exercise will be of great benefit to you and your back.

Getting Started

A great way to warm up the body in the morning is to practice yoga exercises such as the cat and dog pose.  Please click the link below for instructions.

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