Best Exercise – Lunges to Prevent Back Pain
Did you know that neck and low back spine pain affects approximately eighty percent of the population including children? One of the main reasons is the increased amount of time that both children and adults spend sitting watching online tv and computer programs. Most people don’t realize that sitting for long periods of time without standing up and moving around can cause repetitive strain injury (RSI) to our body.
Repetitive strain is caused when our muscle tissues become over-used, shortened, and tightened which ultimately lead to discomfort and pain. One of the easiest ways to combat back pain associated this type of repetitive strain is to take a few minutes and stand up and stretch.
Children will be spending hours every day sitting at their desks in a class studying and playing various games. My suggestion this fall and winter is to stand up every 20 to 30 minutes and do a few lunges to open up your hips, stretch and exercise your body.
People don’t realize that the posture associated with sitting ultimately causes our hip flexors to become shortened and tight. The psoas muscle, which is one of the hip flexors, is responsible for flexing our hips in the seated posture that attaches to the low back. When this muscle becomes tight from spending too many hours in a seated position it puts pressure on the spinal discs in our low back. This pressure can cause the discs to become irritated and inflamed leading to low back pain. Lunges help prevent this from occurring as they stretch hip flexors and work by taking pressure off the low back by opening up the hips and strengthening the glutes. Lunges are not only a great thigh exercise but can positively impact the entire body including the legs, glutes, upper body with raising the arms overhead and core muscles…..all of which can become weak from sitting all day.
So today, when you sit down to watch a tv or online program or respond to emails at your computer, do yourself a favor and try it! Every 20-30 minutes, stop, stand up and do a few lunges and see how you feel! Trust me, your back and spine will thank you!!