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    Exercises for Low Back Pain continued...

    Yoga, with its series of poses that incorporate stretching and strengthening, can be good exercise for low back pain. According to studies, taking yoga classes can improve low back pain and function better than conventional treatment alone. And if you've been feeling down about your achy back, yoga might even improve your mood.

    Aerobic exercises, such as walking, biking, or dancing, get your heart pumping, increase your cardiovascular fitness, and keep your body in overall better health. Sometimes non-impact aerobic exercises like swimming are easier and more comfortable for people with low back pain.

    The Right Way to Do Back Exercises

    As you get ready to launch a lower back exercise program, don't go it alone. See your physical therapist to help design a workout program that works for you.

    It helps to have a physical therapist get you started on your new routine. They can make sure you're doing the exercises properly and monitor your progress. Physical therapy sessions can help you learn how to stretch and strengthen your back muscles -- and the muscles that support them -- correctly. Your physical therapist will also teach you how to stand and sit to prevent strain and pain.

    When you first begin your exercise program, go slowly and follow these tips:

    • Start with as little as 10 minutes of a gentle workout daily. Gradually work your way up to longer and more intense workouts, but always be conscious of your limits.
    • Avoid any exercises that can aggravate your low back pain, including straight leg sit-ups, leg lifts while lying on your back, or lifting heavy weights above your waist.
    • Never work out to the point of pain.

    Chronic Back Pain Exercises

    Exercises you should and shouldn't do when you have back pain.
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