How to Relieve Lower Back Pain By Stretching

April 19, 2012

Must See Flexibility Videos

Lower back pain and stiffness affect athletes and non-athletes of all ages. But it is particularly troublesome for athletes, since it hampers their sports performance, even forcing them to miss practices and games.

Lower back pain can be caused by a multitude of issues, among them weak core muscles and tight hamstrings and glutes. Often, the cause is not directly related to the back. Rather, the back must compensate for a problem elsewhere in the body.

Fortunately, several methods can be used to reduce or eliminate lower back pain. The number one way is simply to stand up and move around. Sitting puts your lower back in a compromising position—particularly if your shoulders and neck are hunched forward. So if you've been sitting for a long period of time, stand up and walk around. It will do wonders for you and your back in the long run.

If you want a more permanent solution to lower-back pain, you need to strengthen your core and regularly stretch your lower back, glutes and hamstrings. Use the stretching routine below to keep your lower back pain-free!

Lower Back Stretching Guidelines

  • Make sure your muscles are properly warmed up before stretching. Jogging in place for one to two minutes and performing Arm Circles for one to two minutes should get the blood flowing to all of your muscles
  • Make sure you are hydrated. Dehydration can actually cause spinal disks to compress and become stiff. Hydration ensures that your stretches will be more effective, and also reduce stiffness and pain
  • Stretch to a comfortable range without pain, and do not exceed the range of motion or bounce during the stretch
  • Inhale and exhale when going into a stretch to reduce tension
  • Hold each stretch for 10 to 15 seconds

Five-Minute Daily Lower Back Stretch Program

Single-Leg Low Back and Hamstring Stretch Series
Lie with back on ground. Bend right knee, grasp with hands and pull to chest. Keep opposite leg on ground. Hold for specified time. Straighten knee so leg is straight up in the air and flex foot. Pull leg toward chest to stretch hamstring. Hold for specified time. Grasp right leg with left hand and pull to side onto ground. Reach to the right with right hand and look to the right. Hold for specified time. Repeat series with opposite leg.

Glute Stretch
Lie on back. Cross right leg over left. Bend left knee to bring it toward left shoulder. With both feet flexed, reach both hands around back of left leg. Lower shoulders and head to ground and pull leg. Hold for specified time.

Lower-Back Stretch
Lie with back on ground. Bend knees and pull to chest. Hold position for specified time.

Photo:  scienceandsports.blogspot.com

Jim Carpentier is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, a New Jersey-licensed massage therapist and a health/fitness writer. He currently serves as associate health and wellness director at the Greater Morristown YMCA in Cedar Knolls, N.J.

Sitting puts your lower back in a comprising position—particularly if your shoulders and neck are hunched forward.
Topics: BACK | COOL DOWN
Jim Carpentier
- Jim Carpentier, CSCS, is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, New Jersey-licensed massage therapist, and a health/fitness writer. He currently serves as Associate Health and...
Jim Carpentier
- Jim Carpentier, CSCS, is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, New Jersey-licensed massage therapist, and a health/fitness writer. He currently serves as Associate Health and...
Must See
How to Perform the Euro Step With Iman Shumpert
Views: 85,034
Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps
Views: 20,441,327
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,563,663

Featured Videos

Abby Wambach's Med Ball Core Workout Views: 187,099
Kevin Love's Cone Hop Basketball Shooting Drill Views: 12,178
Eastbay Path to the Pros Episode 5: Fundamentals Training Views: 220,234
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Charging Ground Balls With Skip Schumaker
Views: 29,842
Yoga for Athletes: Crow Pose
Views: 3,539,378
Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill
Views: 6,865,919
Evan Longoria's Hitting Drills
Views: 9,798,784
Johny Hendricks Workout Overview
Views: 822,554

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

3 Yoga Twists to Keep You on the Field and Improve Your Game

Yoga twistsBack pain is a popular reason for bench warming. Low-back issues abound with athletes across all sports. There are numerous reasons athletes...

Optimizing Energy Transfer in Your Lacrosse Shot

Pre-Workout Warm-Up Steps You Can't Afford to Skip

Stay Pain-Free With These Advanced Stretches

Reducing Tight Hamstrings without Stretching for Hockey Players

Build a More Powerful Golf Swing With These Mobility Drills

The Importance of Recovery Workouts

The Most Important Muscle You've Never Heard Of

The Ultimate Pitcher's Warm-Up: 4 Shoulder Exercises with Bands

The Best Stretching Exercise for You

Improve Your Balance with Stability Ball Exercises

The Yoga Warm-Up for Basketball Players

Must-Have Additions to Your Baseball Stretching Routine

Dynamic Warm-Up Exercises for a Safe, Effective Workout

How to Release Muscle Knots and Trigger Points

Animal Flow Scorpion Reach for Injury Prevention

Best Exercises for Improving Joint Mobility

3 Tips To Make Your Stretching Routine More Effective

Go the Distance With This Baseball Yoga Warm-Up

Increase Your Flexibility Without Stretching

Find Your Effective Pregame Basketball Warm-Up

How to Fix 4 Common Tight Areas in Your Body

Add Warrior Poses to Your In-Season Training

How Hockey Goalies Can Get More Flexible for a Better Butterfly

Are Tight Hips Slowing You Down?

Green Bay Packers Discover Football's Fountain of Youth

Balance Exercises That Are Game-Changers

Why and When You Need to Change Your Pre-Game Warm-Up Routine

Flexibility for Cross Country From the Ground Up

Dynamic Warm-Up Exercises Done the Right Way

3 Exercises That Fix Common Baseball Hip Mobility Issues

Dig Like a Pro: Exercises for Volleyball Mobility

Why You Shouldn't Stretch 24 Hours Before a Game

These 9 Exercises Will Improve Your Hip Mobility

You're Doing It Wrong: The Warm-Up

Fundamentals of a Pre-Workout Warm-Up

Improve Your Squat With 6 At-Home Hip Flexor Mobility Exercises

Mobility Training for Hockey Goalies

6 Thoracic Spine Exercises to Improve Mobility