Low back strain, also known as a lumbar strain injury, can cause a great deal of back pain. It can also make performing certain job tasks challenging, if not impossible. Although rest may be part of the treatment or recovery plan, it’s also important to exercise and perform certain stretches within physician or therapist guidelines. This not only provides relief from pain but can also restore strength and flexibility.
Consulting with a doctor is important before attempting any new exercise program, especially if there has been an injury. Some of the following stretches and exercises could help those with low back strain.
Stretches for Lower Back Pain
You can do back stretches by lying on your stomach and then pushing your upper body off the floor with your arms. Hold for at least 15 seconds, relax the back and drop it down to the floor. Repeat.
Surprisingly, stretching your hamstrings can relieve lower back pain. Lie on your back with legs bent. Grab behind one knee and slowly straighten the leg until you feel the stretch in the back of the thigh. Hold for 30 seconds, relax, and repeat on the other leg.
Low Back Strain Exercises
Pelvic tilt exercises can help with pain. Lie on your back with knees bent. Tighten the abdominal muscles until the small of the back is pressed flat against the floor and tilt your pelvis upward. Hold for at least 15 seconds, relax, and repeat.
Knee to chest stretch: Lie on your back with legs straight out. Bring one knee up to the chest, pressing the small of the back against the floor (like you did in the pelvic tilt stretch above). Hold for at least 15 seconds and repeat on the other leg.
There are just some examples of stretches and exercises that can help with a lumbar strain from work. The doctor assigned by workers’ compensation may have other suggestions for exercises or stretches for lower back pain relief. Again, always refer to the doctor before performing these or other stretches or exercises.
If you are pursuing a workers’ comp case as you recover from your work injury, check out our Iowa Workers’ Compensation An Insider’s Guide to Work Injuries – 7 Deadly Mistakes to Avoid if You are Hurt at Work.