Every time you stand up, bend down, or lift an object, at least a few muscles of your back are getting engaged. If you suffer from back pain, making these simple movements can aggravate your condition. That’s why you need to strengthen your back, your posture, as well as your range of motion.
Exercising is an excellent way to strengthen your back muscles, prevent injuries, and lessen back pain. Best of all, these exercises are beginner-friendly, so you can easily add them to your workout routine. Just don’t forget to do a few minutes of moderate cardio and some gentle stretches to warm up before you get started.
Before attempting some of the more strenuous exercises, check with your chiropractor to get his or her recommendations. Once you get the approval, add these seven back strengthening exercises to your workout sessions:
The plank is an exercise often performed by people who want to strengthen their core muscles. Planks can strengthen your whole body, including some deep back muscles.
To do a plank, place your elbows and forearms on the floor. With your legs extended, lift your body by supporting your weight on your forearms and your toes. Keep your neck in a neutral position, and stare at the floor in front of you. Your body should form a straight line, which will engage your core muscles and your back muscles. Hold this position as long as you can.
2. Scapular push-ups
Scapular push-ups aim to strengthen the muscles around your shoulder blades and improve your shoulder and arm mobility. To do this exercise, start in a high plank position, with only your toes and your hands on the floor, with your arms extended, and your core muscles tightened.
Imagine there is a pencil between your shoulder blades. Pinch your shoulders together to hold this position while you slightly lower your body. Do not try to go all the way down. Then, raise your body back to its initial spot and repeat several more times.
The Superman is an exercise that will strengthen your back extensors, which are muscles that run on both sides of your spine and help maintain your posture.
This exercise is harder to do than it seems. Start by lying face down on the floor, with both arms stretched out in front of you. Make sure your legs are stretched out as well. Engage your core muscles, and lift your hands and your feet a few inches off the ground. Maintain this position for one second, then go back to your initial position. Repeat the exercise a couple more times.
4. Cat-cow stretches
Cat-cow stretches can ease tension in your back muscles and strengthen them. Get on your hands and knees, with your wrists under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Slowly arch your back, drawing your belly button toward your spine. Hold the cat pose for a few seconds.
Next, push your belly button towards the floor while lifting your tailbone and your chest. Maintain the cow pose for a few seconds before going back to the cat pose. Repeat the entire exercise several more times.
5. Renegade rows
Renegade rows train the muscles of your back, but they also improve your core stability. To do this exercise, start in a high plank position. Engage your core muscles, and lift your right hand off the floor. Your elbow should be folded, and tucked close to your body.
Bring your right arm back to its initial position and repeat with your left arm. Repeat the exercise a few more times. To make renegade rows more challenging, you could do this exercise while holding dumbbells.
6. Reverse fly
The reverse fly is an exercise that targets many of the back and shoulder muscles essential to maintaining a good posture. Stand with your knees slightly bent, and keep your arms at your sides while you hinge forward at the waist. Then, engage your core muscles, and lift your arms to the sides while squeezing your shoulder blades.
Next, bring your arms back down, and repeat the same procedures. Once again, you can make this exercise more challenging by holding a dumbbell in each of your hands.
7. Resistance band pull apart
A resistance band pull apart is a simple exercise that will allow you to strengthen your back and improve your posture. To do this exercise, stand with your arms extended in front of you while holding a resistance band. It should be taut and parallel to the floor.
Next, keep your arms straight while moving them to your sides to pull the band close to your chest. You should slightly squeeze your shoulder blades. Bring your arms back to their initial position, and repeat.
Adding even just a few of the exercises on this list to your workout routine will help strengthen your back muscles. Make sure you do these exercises regularly.