These 5 Exercises May be the Reason for Your Back Pain

These 5 Exercises May be the Reason for Your Back Pain

Are you suffering from low back pain? Certain exercises could be worsening your symptoms. Our back doctors recommend evaluating your physical activity throughout the day to determine if there is anything that could be worsening your symptoms. A general rule of thumb would be to avoid movements that cause sharp pain in the back. Typically, twisting or high-impact activities like jumping give patients the most pain. Though it is important to avoid the ones that cause pain, our back doctors recommend continuing with gentle exercises as this helps keep your body healthy and prevents stiffness. In this blog, we will be discussing common exercises to avoid if you are experiencing back pain and good substitutions to replace them.  


The cornerstone of a healthy back is a strong core, however, certain exercises like crunches do put a strain on the spine. If you are suffering from pain in a crunched position it is likely putting pressure on the affected area. The less strength you have in the front (core) the more of a load your back takes.

Try doing gentle exercises like yoga to strengthen your spine and core.


Running may not seem like a high-impact activity to some people, but it puts a lot of stress on the joints. The repeated pounding on the treadmill or ground can really strain the discs or strained muscles that may be causing your back pain.

Walking may be a better option to get your body moving.


Off-Road Biking

Biking is often mentioned as a great option for those with joint pain. Off-road biking on the other hand is not the best option for those with back pain. The sudden movements to avoid objects and the bumps of the road strain the muscles in your pain and will likely cause more pain to come.

A stationary bike will always be the best option for those with back pain. This exercise engages your core while not putting too much stress on the joints and back.


Twisting Exercises

Anything that involves twisting will likely tweak the muscles in your back and cause inflammation. Yoga typically involves twisting movement and when done with improper form, certain movements could cause pain. Instead of avoiding yoga, an exercise style we highly encourage, ask your yoga instructor for substitutes for the movements that cause pain like forward folds or spinal twists.


Deadlifting is a common cause of back pain in patients. One of the main causes of low back pain when deadlifting is improper form. Our back doctors recommend getting a personal trainer before starting this type of exercise to avoid long-term damage to the spine.

Instead, try strengthening your legs and glutes by using the leg press or doing glue bridges.


Final Tips for Back Pain

Most people will experience back pain at some point in their life. If you are a highly active person, it is important to be aware of how the types of exercises you do affect your joint health. Our back doctors recommend seeing a physical therapist to determine if your current exercises regime is supporting your goals while maintaining a healthy body. If you have concerns about your spine health, see our orthopedic doctors specializing in back pain here.

Cassie Whittaker Cassie is the Communications Coordinator for Elite Sports Medicine + Orthopedics. She has been writing and reviewing medical content since 2020.

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