Speed walking, swimming, and stationary bike riding 30 minutes a day can increase muscle strength and flexibility and keep your back healthy. Yoga can also help stretch and strengthen muscles and improve posture. Ask your physician or orthopedist for a list of low-impact exercises appropriate for your age and designed to strengthen the lower back and abdominal muscles.Always stretch before any exercise or other strenuous physical activity.Don't slouch when standing or sitting. When standing, keep your weight balanced on your feet. Your back supports weight most easily when curvature is reduced.At home or at work, make sure your work surface is at a comfortable height for you.Sit on a chair with good lumbar support and proper position and height for the task. Keep your shoulders back. Switch sitting positions often and periodically walk around the office or gently stretch the muscles to relieve tension. A pillow or rolled-up towel placed behind the small of your back can provide some lumbar support. If you must sit for a long period of time, rest your feet on a low stool or a stack of books.Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes.Sleep on your side to reduce any curve in your spine. Always sleep on a firm surface.Ask for help when transferring an ill or injured family member from a reclining to a sitting position or when moving the patient from a chair to a bed.Don't try to lift objects too heavy for you. Lift with your knees, pull in your stomach muscles, and keep your head down and in line with your straight back. Keep the object close to your body. Do not twist when lifting.Maintain proper nutrition and diet to reduce and prevent excessive weight, especially weight around the waistline that taxes lower back muscles. A diet with sufficient daily intake of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D helps to promote the growth of bones.If you smoke, quit. Smoking reduces blood flow to the lower spine and causes the spinal discs to degenerate.
This answer is based on source information from The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes.