When you bend forward at your waist, and keep your knees straight, you put tremendous stress on the muscles, nerves, joints, and ligaments in your low back. To decrease the pain in your low back when you bend forward, pull your belly button in towards your spine (this activates the muscles the help support your low back). Also, make sure to bend your knees and keep your chest up as you are bending and lifting. This significantly enhances the stability of your entire low back and pelvis area. Furthermore, prevent potential back pain by conditioning your core muscles to handle increased stress during daily activities. Stretch and strengthen the muscles surrounding your hips and low back for optimal low back health:
1. Stretch. Stretch your hip flexors and hamstrings. Perform static stretching, holding a stretch for 30 seconds each, on the muscles in front of your hips (your hip flexors) and the muscles in back of your thigh. Both of these areas can lead to misalignment of the hips and spine, which could eventually lead to back pain.
2. Strengthen. Strengthen your abdominals, low back, and hip muscles. Exercises like the all 4s arm/leg raise, floor bridge, planks and squats help to condition the muscles to increase their endurance and strength – two things you will need to keep your back healthy.