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Take Care of Your Back

Both cardiovascular exercises and the training of postural muscles (muscles of the spine and abdomen responsible for stabilizing the spine) are essential for a healthy, pain-free back. Unfortunately, even though they are very important and beneficial, back strengthening exercises are too often neglected during gym sessions. Here are three simple ones. Add them to your current exercise routine.

  • Caution: if you are experiencing back pain, ask your kinesiologist or doctor if these exercises are appropriate for you.

Exercise 1: Reverse Fly
Target area: Back
Accessories: A Swiss ball and a pair of dumbbells,
How many: Perform two sets of 12 repetitions with a 45-second pause between each.
Execution: With the chest resting on the ball, and arms extended towards the floor (A), raise the arms (horizontal extension) until they are parallel to the floor, squeezing the shoulder blades together at the top of the movement (B).

Exercise 2: Superman
Target areas: Back and lumbar muscles
Accessories: Swiss ball
How many: Perform two sets of 12 repetitions with a 45-second pause between each.
Execution: With the hips resting on the ball, and feet at shoulder’s width (A), extend one arm and the opposite leg with a slight back extension. Alternate sides (B). Avoid this exercise if you have back problems.

Exercise 3: Plank (excellent exercise that is simple to perform, and equally works abdominal and back muscles at the same time, in addition to many other muscles of the body.)
Target areas: Abs and back
Accessories: None
How many: Perform two sets of 30 to 45 seconds or more with a 45-second pause between each.
Execution: Contract the abdominal muscles and keep the legs, torso, and head in good alignment (A). Avoid letting the lower back sag.

Karine Larose, M.Sc.

Karine Larose is a kinesiologist, Director of Marketing and Communications and Spokesperson for Nautilus Plus who specializes in fitness motivation. She authored The Guide to Healthier Living, penned the book 10-4 The Healthy Way to Lose 10 Pounds in 4 Weeks and released her third work called Zero Diet: Delicious and Healthy Recipes for Success, all by Les Éditions du TRÉCARRÉ. Karine has launched a series of exercise DVDs entitled 30 minutes par jour pour Vivre Plus and is featured on the ULTIME FIT online platform. Many TV shows and radio stations regularly request Karine’s point of view on physical exercise issues and points of interest.

Take Care of Your Back is a post from I'm taking charge. I'm taking charge is a blog that aims to help people in their journey to fitness through articles on training, nutrition, motivation, exercise and healthy recipes.
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