Prenatal: 6 EXERCISES TO EASE LOWER BACK PAIN

Here are three mobility moves and three strengthening moves which will alleviate lower back ache in pregnancy. More importantly though, this blog post explains why they work and why you need to combine both strength training and stretching to relieve lower back pain. 

 

But first…why might you be experiencing lower back ache in pregnancy?

 

  • Postural changes such as an increase pelvic tilt, which can lead to the increased usage of lower back muscles
  • Movement changes such as having to lift, bend and move in different ways to accommodate your bump size, can cause you to create different movement patterns that overwork / use areas of the body that would not otherwise be called on to take the brunt of the movement. 
  • Lifestyle changes such as moving less, sitting more, sleeping in a different position, all contribute to postural changes 

 

What is the first thing you can look to change?

 

Move more! Not in terms of walk to work instead of drive, or do more exercise. I mean change positions, stretch, move around throughout your day; make sure your body doesn’t have the chance to create more of an imbalance in your postural muscles, or immobile and stiff. 

When we have pain, we often protect it, rest, stay in a position that doesn’t give us pain or sit on the couch / lie in bed more. So unless you have been told specifically by your HCP, physio therapist or osteopath that you need to move less during your pregnancy, 

 

Why do you need to do stretches AND strengthening exercises to alleviate the back ache?

 

Stretching will alleviate the pain, and reduce the pressure on your lower back. But, it does not get to the root of the cause of your lower back ache. Aches are your body’s way of letting you know that you need to do something to help it, that that area of the body is taking all the brunt of your movement and it’s had enough! It can’t cope anymore. To help your body, you need to stretch those areas that are pulling, and strengthen those areas that will help stabilise and support. Without strengthening exercises, you’ll simply be yoyo-ing from release, to pain again.

 

The stretches

  • The piriformis stretch
  • The inner thigh stretch
  • The Quad and TFL stretch

 

The strengtheners

  • The squat (wide legs sit on a chair)
  • The swing squat  (glutes)
  • The posterior strengthener (deadlift swing sway)

Watch the video below to watch our Founder, Siobhan, demonstrate all six movements, which you can follow along with…

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