This is an excellent exercise for the lower back that is very simple to perform. This exercise requires no equipment and it can be performed almost anywhere, even at your office. Many people neglect to do exercises that focus on your lower back. Your lower back, Erector Spinae, supports your upper body and affects almost every sport and every day activity that you do. It is important that you exercise this part of the body. The lower back extension is probably the best exercise for strengthening your lower back as well as eliminating or preventing lower back pain.
If you sit on a chair all day, you may be experiencing tight or sore back muscles. To eliminate these nagging minor pains, perform this exercise 2-3 times per week consisting of 2 sets of 15 repetitions. This is an exercise also recommended by chiropractors and doctors. I've also seen variations of this exercise done in Pilates and Yoga. If you do constantly have back pains, it is advisable that you consult with your doctor before attempting this exercise.
Method of Performance
Lie down on a mat or carpet with your stomach to the floor, keep your arms and hands flat at your sides and legs extended like in a standing position, but lying down. Slowly raise yourself up from your torso as far as you can go but do not over-extend. Just to the point where you feel comfortable and you are receiving the maximum benefit. Remember to tighten your buttocks when lifting yourself from the ground and concentrate on working the lower back. Now slowly lower yourself back to the floor. Don't forget to breathe. Do about 2 sets slowly consisting of 12-15 reps, 2 to 3 times per week.
This exercise can also be done on vertical benches or holding onto extra free weights. The exercise done on a vertical bench is much more difficult. Personally, I do not feel that it is necessary to perform this exercise on a vertical bench since doing it on the floor is just as effective and safer. Using a vertical bench may also put undue strain on your back.
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About the author:
Peter Kudlacz is the owner of PopularFitness.com where you can find online fitness and golf programs, exercise instruction guides, articles, resources and tips.