Stir the Pot – Begin kneeling in front of stability ball. Rest elbows on ball. Straighten legs into a plank position. Keeping spine straight, roll elbows in a circular motion on the ball. Perform this movement in 10 second intervals resting 3 seconds in between reps.
Bird Dog – Activate core muscles. Raise one arm to shoulder level as opposite leg simultaneously lifts off floor, extending to hip height. Pause momentarily. Return to start position and alternate sides. Maintain a straight spine position, not allowing your hips to twist or rotate. Do not hyper-extend low back when extending leg.
Modified Curl up – Lift shoulders off floor, trying to maintain a neutral spine position without rounding low back. Do not allow head to move forward of shoulders during movement. Elbows can remain in contact with floor during movement. Pause momentarily. Return to start position.
Here are some general guidelines for completing core exercises if you have low back pain:
- Never exercise through pain.
• Start by taking gravity out of the equation: start supine or prone, quadruped, kneeling then standing.
• Increase intensity or time, but not both.
• Intensity can be increased by either changing resistance or changing stability.
- If you experience any low back pain flare-ups, decrease your workout intensity.
- Avoid unsupported forward flexion exercises at first
• Avoid lifting both legs in a supine or prone position
• Avoid rapid movements especially twisting at the waist
• Extend warm-up and cool down periods
• Focus on good form, training the movement and not the muscles
As with all exercise programs, long-term adherence and exercise execution on a regular basis are important to achieve satisfying results.