Back pain is a common problem. In fact, most people will experience a painful back at some point in their lives, and because it's the lower back that takes a lot of the strain caused by everyday activity, this is where the pain is often centred.
Perhaps it's because back pain is so common that many people suffer in silence, but whatever the reason, it needn't be that way. If you're one of the masses of people dealing with lower back pain on a regular basis, there are things you can do to help, and one of the most effective is doing the right exercises.
The most simple exercise in theory, but for the inexperienced, difficult to hold for long. That's okay, though, since every second you do manage to hold the position will add up to stronger core muscles, including those in the lower back. With stronger muscles comes better support, which means less pain.
Lie face down on the floor, and push yourself up onto your forearms. The position you want to achieve is as if you're doing a push-up with your forearms instead of hands on the ground. Keep your body straight and hold as long as you can, before gently lowering yourself. Try and do this every day, increasing the duration gradually.
Lie on your back and bend your knees. Spread out your arms, and gently lift your hips until they line up with your shoulders. Hold for a couple of seconds, then lower again. Do 10 of these each day to stretch out the back muscles.
Lean back against a wall and slowly lower yourself into a sitting position, using the wall as support. Hold for five seconds, and come back up. As you get more accustomed to doing this exercise on a daily basis, you can increase to 10 and then 20 seconds over time.
Lie down on your front and put your forearms flat on the floor as if you're about to go into the planking position. Instead of lifting your whole body up, though, keep your hips and legs on the ground, lifting only your chest. Be gentle and don't try to push yourself up too far, as you can cause injuries if you overdo it. Hold for a count of five and repeat five times, working up to 10 as you get better at the exercise and your flexibility increases.