There are various things that may make your lower back tight. Lower back tightness can affect your physical activeness. However, there are exercises that you can do to set your back free. For example, bridge, seated cat-cow, pelvic tilts exercises can relieve you. Keep on reading to know the different exercises that you can do to relieve yourself from lower back tightness.
What Causes Lower Back Tightness?
You might experience back pains and tightness due to various reasons. For instance, everyday activities like having a poor posture or spending the day seated may result in a tight lower back. More so, back injuries, accidents are some things that may cause back tightness. In addition to that, if you execute a certain exercise inappropriately, you might suffer from back tightness. Therefore, back tightness can be a result of different issues. Below is a list of other things that can make your back tight and painful.
- Irritated joins
- Tight glutes and hamstring muscles
- Sports injuries
- Strained back muscles
- Spine problems
- Exercising in the wrong form
- Lifting heavyweights in the wrong form
- Wrong sleeping position
- Being less active
Lower Back Exercises
Tightness in the back may be unbearable. It may make it difficult to do your day-to-day activities. However, exercising might help you feel better in the long run. Before exercising, if you are not too sure what causes the back pain, you might need to visit your doctor. Your doctor might advise you accordingly. Nevertheless, below are the lower back exercises that you may do to relieve yourself of the lower back tightness.
The bridge exercise is good for exercising the lower back. Additionally, this exercise stretches the spine, the lower back and hamstring muscles. Furthermore, the bridge exercise is good for strengthening the glutes. Glutes are important for moving your hips. As such, keeping glutes strong can help you support your lower back. Besides that, it calms the central nervous system and it can be helpful in alleviating stress. Consequently, a stressed body can suffer from various pains. To do the supported bridge, follow these steps
- Lie on the floor facing on the ceiling with bent knees and feet planted on the floor.
- Lift your butt and hips to place the cushion underneath them. Balance yourself with your feet, shoulders, and the cushion as you try to form a straight bridge.
- Stay in that position for a minute or at least 3 seconds.
- You can repeat for 5 times, resting for a minute between the sets.
Lying Lateral Leg Lifts
This exercise is good for working hip abductor muscles. More so, hip muscles are known for supporting the pelvis. As such, exercising these muscles can reduce the back tightness. In addition to that, exercising the hip muscles can strengthen them and maintain hip mobility. Follow the steps to do the exercise properly;
- Lie down on your side with one leg on top of the other. Balance your head with your hand.
- Brace your core muscles by drawing the bellybutton inside.
- Lift your leg up and keep it extended
- Keep your lifted leg in that position for 2 to 3 seconds and return it to the starting position.
- You can repeat 15 to 2 times.
- After that, turn and exercise the other side.
Doing pelvic tilts can flex your back muscles. Furthermore, pelvic tilts exercise can loosen lower back muscle tightness. In addition to that this workout engages the hamstrings, gluteus maximus, rectus abdominis, and sacral muscles. To do the exercise follow these steps below;
- Lie on your back on the floor with bent knees and feet planted flat on the floor. Your arms must be flat by your sides
- Keep your upper back on the floor and tighten your abs as you push your pelvis up a bit.
- Keep yourself in that position for 10 seconds and then return to the starting position.
- You can repeat up to 15 times and keep on increasing the reps daily.
- Doing the seated cat-cow exercise can help you to stretch your entire back muscles. By doing so it can reduce the muscle tension. More so, the exercise makes the spine flexible. It can also stretch your hips and abdomen. Below are the easy steps to follow when doing the seated cat-cow exercise;
- Sit on the chair with your feet planted on the floor.
- Place your hands on your laps towards your knees with the elbows curved out and the fingers extended towards each other.
- Press your press as you look upward and arching your back.
- Then roll your shoulders forward while drawing your belly button towards the spine and tuck your chin to the chest.
- You can repeat this move for five times or more.
The partial curls exercise is good for strengthening the abdominal muscles. And these muscles are good at keeping the spine aligned. In addition, the exercise also strengthens the core. More so, the core and the abdominal muscles keep your back stable. As such, when they are weak, they are likely to cause back pain. To do the exercise follow the steps below;
- Lie on the floor facing upwards and bend your knees with your feet hip-width apart
- Put your hands on your chest and cross them loosely
- Pull the abdominal muscles in the stomach and raise your shoulders and head off the ground for about 5cm.
- Keep yourself in that position for 5 seconds
- You can repeat for at least 10 times and perform 3 sets
Lower Back Stretches
Stretching your body is good for improving the blood flow to your muscles. In addition to that, it makes your muscles flexible and it can make it easy to do physical activities. Furthermore, stretching can heal your back pain. Below are different lower back stretch exercises that you can do.
Seated Rotational Stretches
Doing the seated rotational stretches is good for relieving lower back pain. This exercise targets the spine, lower back, and core muscles. To do the exercise;
- Sit on a chair and plant your feet on the floor.
- Place your right hand behind the head and the left hand on your knee.
- Start by twisting to the right and keep yourself in that position for 10 seconds.
- Then twist to the left side.
- You can repeat 5 to 10 times.
Lower Back Rotational Stretches
This exercise is good for relieving lower back tightness and tension. Additionally, the lower back rotational stretches exercise also targets the core. As such it can improve back stability if you do it correctly. Below are steps you can follow to do the exercise.
- Lie on your back with feet planted on the floor.
- Stretch your arms sideways on the floor.
- Keep shoulders firm on the floor and roll your bent knees to one side.
- Hold yourself in that position for 10 seconds
- Then roll your knees to the other side and hold for 10 seconds before returning to the starting position.
- You can repeat for 5 times on each side.
Doing the sphinx stretch exercise activates your back muscles. In addition to that, the exercise strengthens the butt muscles, spine, and chest. Follow the steps below to do the sphinx exercise;
- Lie straight on the floor facing down. Your hands must be planted on the floor with the palms facing down by your rib cage.
- Lift your head and your chest up.
- The balance on the floor with your hands and the pelvis
- Pose and remain in that position for 2 to 3 minutes
Knee To Chest Stretch
The knee to chest stretch targets your glutes, hips, and thighs. Besides that, it also relaxes these muscles and can make your lower back feel better from pains. In addition, it can improve blood circulation around your lower back. To do the exercise;
- Lie on the floor on your back with your knees bent and feet planted on the floor.
- Straighten your left leg along the floor.
- Lock your hands on top of the shinbone and draw your knee to the chest.
- Keep yourself in that position for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Then change and exercise the other leg.
Upper back tightness
The same reasons that cause lower back tightness can also cause upper back tightness. For instance, reasons such as poor posture, muscle strain, spine issues, and many others can make your upper back suffer from pains. To relieve yourself of upper back tightness you can do the following exercises.
- Overhead arm stretch
- Neck flexion
- Wall stretch
- Child’s pose
- Shoulder roll
- Opposite arm/leg raise
The above exercises can be done at home without additional gym equipment. Interestingly, they are also easy to execute. As such, you can do them at any time of the day. For instance, you can do these exercises before and after exercise. Doing the exercises before and after the major exercises can prepare your body and muscles for the challenging exercises. After doing the challenging exercise, you can also do the stretch exercise to relax the muscles and the entire body.
Tightness in the lower back can affect your day to day moves. However, you must pay attention to the causes of lower back tightness. There are a lot of things that may cause that. It might be caused by a short-term thing or underlying condition. However, you can try lower back stretch exercises to loosen the tight muscles in that area. The above text outlined the benefits and the proper form of various exercises that you can try. Some of them include; pelvic tilts, seated cat-cow stretch, sphinx stretch, and many others discussed above.
How have you been mitigating the lower back pain? Which exercises are good for relieving lower back tightness?