Bad Exercises for Your Back

Back Pain Treatment Fort Worth TXSince we’re just a few months into the New Year, some of you may actually still be living up to your resolutions. Way to go, especially if one of them was to exercise more.

That said, even the most regular exercise participants often don’t understand why certain workouts have them grabbing their lower back the next day. There are just certain exercises that are really hard on your back…and it matters not if they are the most famous, longest tenured exercises in the world. If you don’t want to hurt your back, and come see us at DFW Center for Spinal Disorders, these are four exercises to avoid.

Sit-ups

Your lower back thinks this old gym class staple sucks, at least in the way most people do them — with your hands clasped behind your head. When you do this, most people use their hands to pull up, rather than their core. This puts tons of pressure on your neck and upper spine. If you pull quick and hard enough, as happens when your stomach has had enough, you can actually herniate a disc.

Heavy overhead lifts

If you think you’re a big-time weight lifter or are out to show off to a friend who came to lift with you, your back is on alert. Grab the barbells, load on some weight and pretend you’re in the Olympics. Ouch. When your lower back arches as your shoulders move backward just a bit, you are compressing the vertebrae of your lower spine. This can actually fracture a vertebra.

Incline leg presses

This staple of the grunters at the gym is why most of them have back trouble at some time or another. When you sit on the machine you are angled backwards with your legs above your head. This puts your back in an awkward, unnatural, flexed position. Push hard enough and you can create lots of back problems that you won’t feel immediately, but they’ll come see you over time.

Incorrect squats

Squats are great for your lower body, if you do them right. Problem is, most people do them wrong, plus they lift lots of weight while they’re at it. This probably started when you were young, where you didn’t pay for it. Tons of weight coupled with bad form equals back injury. Learn how to do a squat correctly and start with just lifting your body weight rather than loading up the barbells.

If you’ve been doing any of these exercises, it’s a good idea to find better alternatives such as planks or pilates as substitutes. Of course, if you’ve already hurt your back, we need to see you at DFW Center for Spinal Disorders. Call us at (817) 916-4685 to make an appointment.

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