How to Exercise to Prevent Back Injury or Pain

By S.F. Heron

Preventing back injury or pain tops the list of concerns for many golfers. As a result, these individuals should practice a planned regimen of exercise, nutrition and proper health practices to keep the body and back in great shape. Preventing back pain begins with correcting posture problems and then incorporating regular exercise into your daily routine. By strengthening the core muscles of the body, you'll protect your back from injury. The core muscles control most of the major movements required from the torso when swinging a club. A whole-body workout offers the benefits of physical fitness and is the optimal way to prevent back injury and pain.

Commit to a regular exercise regimen off the course. This plan should be in addition to any exercise you get while playing a round of golf. Include aerobic activities such as walking, jogging, dancing or working out on the elliptical or treadmill. The benefits include a healthier you and more responsive and flexible muscles that are less inclined to injury.

Maintain correct posture when sitting, standing and lying down. According to the Cleveland Clinic, correct posture involves aligning the body to properly support muscles and ligaments. This reduces strain on muscles and reduces muscle fatigue.

Strengthen the back with a core exercise regimen. Core exercises focus on the abdomen, lower back, hips and pelvis. These muscles form the support system for the upper body. Strong core muscles help control your golf swing and protect it from overuse injuries.

Sit on a properly inflated exercise ball. Lean the ball up against a wall or piece of furniture for stability. Spread the feet about shoulder width apart with feet flat on the floor. Fold your arms across your chest and lean back slightly until you feel pulling on your abdomen. Hold the stomach muscles tight as you inhale and exhale to lift forward into to a straight position. Repeat the movement slowly until you feel fatigued.

Position the exercise ball between your lower back and a clear wall. Stand with feet just wider than shoulder width apart, back straight and hands at the side. Take a half step forward, pointing the toes slightly out. Bend from the knees into a squat position as the ball rolls up to your shoulder blades. Straighten the legs to return to the start position. Make sure to tighten the abdominal throughout this movement as you perform 15 reps.

Stretch the back with a fitness ball exercise called back extension. Kneel on the floor with the ball in front of you. Lean forward, placing your stomach on the ball. Allow the ball to support your weight as you straighten your legs to support your body on the ball and your toes. Tuck your hands behind your lower back and gently arch your back while squeezing your glutes. Hold and then release back onto the ball. Stabilize your body by anchoring your feet against the wall to prevent the ball from rolling.

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