In the United States, a staggering 16 million adults grapple with chronic back pain, while a multitude experiences intermittent bouts of discomfort. This condition significantly curtails both daily movement and exercise routines. Nonetheless, engaging in cautious, low-impact exercises can play a pivotal role in reestablishing range of motion, fortifying back muscles, and gradually enhancing one’s well-being. Moreover, these exercises help in burning calories and maintaining a healthy weight. Curious about the most beneficial workouts for your back? Here are seven calorie-burning exercises to consider.
- Yoga: Although not the swiftest calorie burner, yoga proves incredibly advantageous for strengthening and toning the body in a back-friendly manner, notes Andrew White, CPT, founder of Garage Gym Pro. Styles like Vinyasa or power yoga offer physical demands aiding in weight loss while enhancing flexibility, balance, and core strength—crucial elements for back health. Buti yoga, recommended by Sean Klein, CPT, is a low-impact exercise combining cardio, strength training, and flexibility, fostering full-body fitness.
- Stand-up Paddle Boarding: For those near water bodies, stand-up paddle boarding emerges as an enjoyable weight-loss method. Klein highlights it as a comprehensive workout engaging arms, legs, and core while benefitting from water buoyancy, reducing pressure on joints and the spine—a boon for individuals with back ailments.
- Stability Ball Exercises: Employing stability balls in workouts is an excellent method for fat burning and core toning without straining the back. The ball’s unstable surface engages core and stabilizer muscles, enhancing balance, coordination, and overall body challenge.
- Swimming: As a highly efficient exercise, swimming can burn 180 to 250 calories in half an hour. Its low-impact nature eases pressure on muscles, making it one of the safest options for individuals hoping to lose weight while safeguarding their back and other bodily muscles.
- Recumbent Bike Cycling: Cycling, whether outdoors or on a stationary bike, offers a low-impact exercise for burning calories. It strengthens legs, aids cardiovascular health, and provides back support during the activity, making it suitable for overall weight loss, especially for individuals with prior back injuries.
- Elliptical Training: When running on solid surfaces exacerbates back pain, transitioning to elliptical machines is recommended. This equipment offers a gliding movement without impact, beneficial for those with sensitivity to jarring movements, providing a full-body challenge without straining the back.
- Walking: Simple yet powerful, walking stands as an accessible exercise gentle on the back. It is an effective calorie-burning activity, especially when brisk walking or varying terrain is incorporated. Strengthening the lower body and enhancing cardiovascular fitness without jarring impact makes walking a top choice.
For enhanced benefits, integrating a weighted rucking pack during walks aids in building muscle strength in the back and core over time.