Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Exercise of the Day: Back Extensions

Let's strengthen up your lower back today by doing back extensions. It is important to have strong lower back muscles in order to have the foundation and power to carry out most exercises correctly and in proper form, especially upper body exercises. Also, most people focus far too much on doing crunches for their abs, and their bodies become too out of proportion in muscles mass in the front, causing strain on your lower back. You need balance!!!!

I typically prefer doing back extensions using the Roman Chair (as pictured), but if this is unavailable to you, you can do back lifts, such as the Superman exercise, on the ground. There are also back extension machines in most gyms. I'll discuss the exercise in terms of the Roman Chair.

1-Stand between the two pads of the Roman Chair so that you are facing the large pad.
2-Position your upper thighs against the large pad and place your ankles under the foot braces. Activate your core to remain stable.
3-Lower your upper body so that it is perpendicular with the floor.
4-Slowly and with control, flex your lower back muscles to raise your torso back upwards, keeping your torso flat----Do not arch your back! Stop when your torso is raised slightly above your hips. You do not want to hyperextend your back!
5-Do as many repetitions as you can in 1 minute.


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