According to this article on CNN there is a way to strengthen your spine. Your spine is all bone and nerves, right? No muscles, right? How do you strengthen something that is not a muscle? You can’t. You can, however, strengthen the muscles that support your spine to alleviate or reduce back pain.
The first of seven ways to strengthen your spine is a good one: good posture. I have to constantly remind myself to have good posture, especially while at work at my desk. Slouching just comes too naturally and easily and I always need to suck in my gut and sit up straight.
Deep breathing is #2 and along with solid breathing you should work in some ab work to strengthen your core. The stronger your core the better your body will support your weight and your back will feel better because of it.
#3 is targeting exercises for your joints and your core, so he was getting to core work. Problem – no examples of what exercises people should perform are given. That seems to be a big gap. If I am reading an article looking for ways to alleviate back pain there is a good chance I don’t know how to alleviate back pain. Examples of good exercises would be a great idea. Me thinks.
You may not think that your diet affects your spine, but it actually plays a key role. A healthy diet consisting mostly of lean proteins, healthy fats and lots of fresh fruits and vegetables is ideal for building a lean body and muscles that support the spine.
To improve the condition of your spine, supplement your diet with a multivitamin along with a B-complex and Omega-3s, as they have been shown to help decrease pain in the nerves of the spine.
Preach on! Nothing about carbs, talk of eating healthy fats and getting omega-3’s! So refreshing.
#5 and #6 are staples of the Paleo or Primal lifestyle: get plenty of quality sleep and get your vitamin D supplement if you don’t get enough sun. Vitamin D is a daily intake for myself and I try to get eight hours of sleep every night and that usually means I am in bed by 8pm since my alarm goes off at 4:20am.
The final step to strengthen your spine is meditation. Great, another relaxation suggestion.
How about these exercises to actually strengthen your spine, not general tips on a healthy lifestyle?
- Deadlift – yep, do it for your back.
- Situps – just regular old situps.
- Rollout – mobility work with a foam roller or lacrosse ball on your lower back can help get rid of the knots that keep your back tight.
- Hamstring stretches – your back is directly connected to your glutes and hamstrings so stretch out that posterior chain.
- Squatting – with weight, preferably, to build that posterior chain strength.
- Reverse Hyper – keep that rear end looking good and strong and it will help support that back.
- Back extensions or superman pose – don’t avoid back exercises in fear of hurting your back, do them to make your back stronger.
There are seven exercises to actually help you build strength. The article on CNN.com is a good one, but it doesn’t seem to actually do as the title says.