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Can Exercise Help Back Pain?

Back exercise using ballStudies show that if you are physically active you are less likely to have lower back pain, because physical activity strengthens the bones and cartilage of the spine, protecting against the degeneration that increases as we age.

Also, physical activity increases blood flow to cartilage discs in the spine that are not as likely to receive enough blood supply. As evidence of this, studies indicate that people who run on a regular basis have healthier cartilage disks.

But keep in mind that different types of exercise will be effective and safe for different people. The variables may include the level of your individual fitness and any medical conditions you may be dealing with.

It’s also important to keep in mind that whatever you do with your exercise routine, make sure you stick to it over the long term.

Core Strength

It’s been found that the spine is susceptible to pain when our core muscles are weak. So, exercising and strengthening the core muscles can make a positive difference.

People often think of the core muscles as their stomach muscles, but they also include back muscles, as well as the hip muscles, quadriceps, and hamstrings, all of which support the spine and pelvis. And they all keep the midsection stable, acting like a natural brace.


Stretching is an important part of any plan to prevent or help with back pain. Well-stretched muscles are less prone to injury. And muscles with connective tissues that are not well stretched inhibit joint mobility, which increases the likelihood of sprains and strains.

It’s recommended that you stretch regularly. But be sure that you do this gently. Start by holding a stretch for just a short time and gradually build up to about 30-second stretches over time.

Putting Together a Safe, Comfortable Exercise Program at Home

Before starting your exercise program, you may want to see a physical therapist or other appropriate medical providers. Below are links that provide safe ways to get started on your own:



*Please Note: Information on this site or any recommended sites should not be used as a diagnosis or a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.
Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery