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3 Strengthening Exercises to Help Prevent Lower Back Pain

Provided by AdvilĀ®

Back pain can put a real damper on your life, turning something as basic as your regular gym workout into a miserable experience. But you can reduce the risk of lower back pain by incorporating a few simple moves into your routine. These three exercises will strengthen your core and gluteal muscles to decrease any strain on your back and help ward off everyday aches and pains. (Remember to consult your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen.)

Wall Sit

1. Stand with your back against a wall.

2. Slowly slide your back down the wall and move your feet out about 12 inches, until your thighs are parallel with the floor. (Imagine you are sitting in an invisible chair.)

3. With your back remaining flat against the wall and your abs tight, hold the wall sit position for 20 seconds, then slowly stand up and rest for 30 seconds.

4. Repeat two more times. As you continue to practice this exercise, work up to holding each wall sit for one minute.

Bird Dog

1. Start on all fours; your arms and thighs should be parallel to each other and perpendicular to the floor.

2. Keeping your core engaged, slowly lift your right arm until it is parallel with the floor. At the same time, lift your left leg so it is also parallel with the floor.

3. Hold for a few seconds, then return to starting position and repeat on the opposite side. That's one rep.

4. Work up to 10 reps total.

Bridge

1. Start by lying on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor.

2. Move your feet out to about hips-width apart.

3. Exhale as you slowly lift your hips. Keep your feet flat on the floor. Hold for a few seconds, then inhale as you return to starting position.

4. Work up to 10 reps total.

Find other great health and wellness stories at MarthaStewart.com/Strive.