There are numerous reasons why your lower back may be weak – your sedentary desk job being one of them. Sitting with bad posture all day can contribute to underdeveloped glutes, which function together with the lower back. Another reason why people have a weak lower back is due to the fact they focus too much on their abs with crunches and other front-body exercises while overlooking the muscles in the back. Whatever the reason, you can start to safely strengthen your lower back with the following exercises.
Start on all fours on a padded surface, such as a mat or a carpet. Begin with a normal spine then turn your back towards the ceiling like an angry cat. Allow your head to drop down, and relax it. At this point, you should feel a mild stretch through your back. Next, drop your belly button towards the ground, and raise your head upward in a cow pose. Repeat 12 times.
2. Hip Bridge
The hip bridge works to toughen the muscles in your core and lower back that offer support to your spine, putting you at less risk of lower back pain. For this exercise, lay flat on your back with your feet flat and knees bent on the ground.
Raise your hips towards the ceiling with your knees bent and utilize your core strength. Hold the position when your hips become even with your knees, so that you could draw a straight line (or a bridge) from your shoulders to your knees. Maintain this position for about 5 to 15 seconds, inhaling and exhaling deeply then bring your body to the ground. Perform 10 reps of this exercise.
3. The Corpse
Lie flat on your back in a relaxed position, with your palms down, arms resting by your sides, and legs lying comfortably, with your knees turned slightly outwards. If it starts to hurt your back when you have your knees turned out, do this pose with your feet flat and knees bent on the floor. Inhale and exhale deeply for a few seconds and allow your body to release all the stress and muscle tension.
4. Floor Swimming
Also referred to as the Superman exercise, floor swimming involves you lying face down on the ground with your legs stretched behind you and your arms stretched straight overhead. Now raise your legs a couple of inches and kick them, switching sides. You can also raise your right arm and left leg together, then lower and lift your left arm and right leg. Do 10 – 20 reps of this exercise.
5. The Fish Pose
Lie flat on your back with arms by your side and knees bent. Arch your back as much as you easily can and lift it from the ground by pushing the ground with your elbows. If you can, angle your head backwards and rest the crown of your head on the ground. Breathe deeply from the diaphragm and hold this position for about a one minute if you can.