Back pain? Muscle fatigue? Constant slouching? Strengthening your back is a great way to minimise these issues. But as the back is home to many important structures, starting a back workout routine isn’t as easy as picking out a few strength exercises. Creating a good routine is a process. So, here’s our advice to help you along.
A crucial part of any workout is the warm-up. It’ll help prepare your back and all the muscle groups you’re about to use for strenuous exercise by boosting blood flow. You kick-start the oxygen and nutrient delivery process and relax your muscle tissue, making it less prone to injury.
The key to a good warm-up is doing exercises that gradually get your heart rate up and make you a little bit sweaty. Try activities like:
- Jogging in place to boost your overall heart rate
- Bodyweight squats to warm up the legs
- Bird dog for the back
- Planks for the core
Your back houses nerves, disks, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and delicate bony structures. Doing too much too fast can overload this network, so when starting a back workout routine, start low and increase gradually. For your first few sessions, pay a lot of attention to how your body responds to different positions, weights, and rep counts. If you feel everything’s in order and your spine and other joints can handle the intensity, gradually increase your reps. If not, take it down a notch, or do gentle core and back strengthening exercises for a couple of weeks to prep your spine better.
Sports Back Support
Another great way to prepare your spine and avoid injury is through a back brace. Now you might think it’s overkill, but bracing with something like our Sports Back Support has a lot of benefits:
- Compression knit fabric activates the muscles, making them work more efficiently and effectively to support the spine.
- It also builds on your warm-up, boosting circulation to relax your muscles and speed up oxygen and nutrient delivery.
- And through the increased support and circulation, a quality back brace can improve your performance and speed up your recovery.
On that note, you can also try mixing in some other sports supports. If your arms (for example) are having trouble keeping up with your routine, a pair of arm compression sleeves can reduce muscle fatigue and keep them working longer.
You shouldn’t abruptly stop a workout. While it may be tempting to sit down and rest after finishing your last set, doing 15 minutes of low-intensity exercises and stretches has several benefits.
- For one, it can reduce the intensity of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).
- It can also speed up muscle recovery, as your hard-working muscles keep getting an increased supply of oxygen and nutrients.
- And it can help increase your range of motion. Your muscles are at their warmest after a workout, making this the best time to stretch them.
Essentially, you avoid some back stiffness and soreness and reduce your risk of back injury. Because the more flexible your lumbar, hamstrings, and core are, the less likely you are to strain or pull them.
Try adding some of these stretches into your cool-down routine: The Best Cool-Down Exercises to Add to Your Training Routine
Rest and recover
Recovery is important. Especially if you’re just starting out, your back muscles, tendons, and ligaments will need sufficient rest to get used to your routine. Pushing the same muscle groups past their limit for multiple days in a row will just lead to exhaustion, injury, and tissue breakdown, halting your progress.
Research shows that muscles take 24-48 hours to recover after a strenuous workout, with some experts recommending up to 72. So, space out your back workouts and cross-train other body parts or do gentle exercises like swimming in between. And remember, you should have one rest day between every 3-5 workout days.
There are a ton of things that can derail you from your workout goals. Busy schedules, aching muscles and bad weather, just to name a few. So, turning your back workout routine into a habit is essential.
- Try to find exercises you enjoy doing and sprinkle them in alongside more difficult or boring ones. It’s not always easy to love working out (especially at the beginning), but the more you like your overall workout, the more likely you’ll be to stick with it.
- Create a schedule so your back workout becomes a routine rather than just a handful of exercises you occasionally do.
- If you can, work out with a friend. It’ll be easier to stay accountable and motivated.
- Keep your goals realistic. As with any workout, building back muscle takes time and effort - you won’t get rippling lats in a week.
To sum up
Starting a back workout routine is an involved process. You’ll need to start easy, mix in some sports supports, and create a routine with all the proper warm-ups, cool-downs, and recovery days. But as long as you stay on track and take these precautions, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier, stronger spine.
If you require assistance selecting the right product for your needs or wearing the brace, call us on 1300 668 466 or contact us via live chat.Do you have private health? Most private health extras will cover Bauerfeind Products. Check to see if yours is included. Bauerfeind Private Health Insurance Inquiry.