How to Strengthen Your Lower Back with the Pelvic Tilt
4 of 6 in Series: The Essentials of Day 5 of Your Ten-Minute Tone-Up
If you have lower-back pain, then try the Pelvic Tilt exercise to boost lower back stability and flexibility. The Pelvic Tilt is a tiny move that works the abdominals and hamstrings in its action.
Many people with lower back problems are quick to do abdominal exercises to help relieve the pain. This is a very wise choice, but it’s not the entire answer. To help alleviate lower back pain and prevent injury, you need to work the part of your body fitness experts refer to as the core. The core muscles consist of the lower back muscles as well as the abdominals. If one group is stronger than the other, balance is lost, posture is off, and you're likely to start feeling back pain. It’s the union of a strong lower back and abdominal muscles that leads to a healthy core.
Use the following lower back hints to enhance your workout:
Listen to your body: Because the lower back is such a sensitive area, you must listen to your body. If you currently have back troubles, are prone to injury, or are experiencing any pain during the exercises, please consult with your physician.
Warm-up and stretch: Always do an aerobic warm-up before your lower back routine and
Breathe properly: Be sure to exhale during exertion, which is the most difficult part of the exercise, and whatever you do, don’t hold your breath.
Don’t jerk: In order for lower back exercises to be successful, you must use slow, controlled movements. Jerky form creates too much stress on the back.
Use your legs and buns: When lifting, you should bend and use your legs and buns to assist you with the movement.
Arch your back slightly: When doing lower back extension exercises, arch your back only slightly. It helps if you think of elongating or lengthening the spine rather than raising the lower back up high.
To do the Pelvic Tilt:
Lie on the floor on your back with your arms behind your head. Bend your knees so that your feet are flat on the floor about hip-width apart.Contract or squeeze your abdominals as you press your back down.
Hold your back on the floor as you tilt your hips to raise your butt about an inch off the floor — 2 inches maximum. Stay in this position for a moment. Slowly bring your butt back to start.As a beginner, you can do five or fewer repetitions. Gradually increase up to 20 or even more repetitions.
You may want to lift the lower back up. For the Pelvic Tilt to be effective, keep the lower back in neutral alignment for the duration of the exercise. Do not raise your head, neck, or shoulders. Remember not to arch your back.
The following options let you adapt this exercise to your fitness level:
Use a chair: To make the pelvic tilt easier, do it with your feet placed up on a chair. Bend your knees in a 90-degree angle so that your upper legs are perpendicular to the floor.
Raise your hips: Make the move more difficult by starting it with hands on your hips.