Exercising when you have recently experienced lower back pain is problematic. Care must be taken to avoid exacerbating an existing injury or reactivating an older one.

Here are some suggestions for how to remain active even when you sometimes suffer from pain in the lumbar region of your back.

Rest Your Back with Better Sleep

To give yourself better back health, a good amount of sleep in a comfortable bed is extremely helpful. If you have a mattress that causes you discomfort and you never seem to wake up feeling good, then a new bed might be in order. The best mattress for back pain will provide ample support for your back, including at its lowest point. This reduces the likelihood of waking up sore before your day has even begun.

Take Up Swimming

Swimming is an excellent exercise for anyone with back trouble because if they resist the urge to dive headfirst into the pool, there’s no impact on the body. The water provides natural buoyancy that supports the total body total weight.

This activity can be as gentle or as vigorous as preferred, depending on your arm and leg strength plus the type of stroke used. We’d recommended breaststroke on your front, or for a gentler time, backstroke while relaxing on your back. Avoid the front crawl as it’s too active and risks rotating your body too much.

Spin Bike

The spin bike or stationary bike at the gym is a good one to choose too. You can stay upright while riding to avoid leaning forward, which could create a pull in your lower back. Riding at your own pace is an excellent way to work up a sweat while giving your legs heavy activity. On the other hand, while riding a regular bicycle, there’s a risk of going over unexpected bumps or poorly made paths that would create reverberations up your body.

Walk, Don’t Run

The thing to avoid is impact damage. Running will cause some impact as each leg goes into the air, and then the foot lands back on the ground again. The impact is lessened with slower running on grass, but it’s not eliminated. Alternatively, running on a treadmill is a little better but for people with back pain, it’s still not a great idea!

Walking, on the other hand, is far gentler. Adopt a slow walking style that lets you glide along where the feet don’t impact the ground at all. The goal is to barely lift each foot with your movement to minimize any bounciness to the walk.


Performing some press-ups is good for your body. It uses the arms, which won’t get much use during walking or with the spin bike either.

Press-ups can be done against a wall by starting directly in front of it and pushing away from it (without losing your balance). It’s not necessary to get down on your hands and knees to perform traditional push-ups if that could risk painfully activating your back.

Alternative Movements

With fitness or weight loss, the goal is to be less sedentary by physically moving around more. While some exercises are good for certain muscle groups, keep it simple.

Other than those activities recommended above, think outside the box. Doing some yoga, mowing the lawn, cleaning at waist level without stretching uncomfortably will all get you moving. It doesn’t matter what you do, just as long as you stay physically active despite current limitations.

By looking for exercises that work for you and aren’t causing additional pain, it’s possible to stay in shape and be healthier despite physical challenges. This allows time to heal up without making your back any worse.

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