The causes of back pain may vary from one person to another, but one thing that helps many people suffering from back pain and joint pain is swimming. Swimming is a low-impact aerobic exercise that doesn’t place stress on the back, as the water helps to support your body weight. In fact, when performed correctly, swimming, and exercises in the pool can help to alleviate back pain and prevent future problems. Below we take a look at some swimming exercises that are recommended to help relieve back pain and strengthen your body.

Different Strokes

Swimming itself is a great exercise but the stroke you use can affect the pressure you put on your back. If suffering from back pain you should be careful to avoid extension of the spine, so if swimming breaststroke you should avoid holding your head out of the water constantly without breaks. If you are unable to do this, you should avoid this stroke initially. Front crawl and backstroke can be the best to engage your core muscles if done properly. Unless you are a competent swimmer you should avoid the butterfly technique.

Treading Water

Treading water is the process of walking in the water without propelling yourself in any specific direction, whilst maintaining an upright position. It involves moving the feet in a walking motion while moving the hands in a downward circular motion and keeping the head above the surface of the water. Not only does treading water help to strengthen the back, but this type of swimming exercise is beneficial to your heart, lungs, and muscles, and also aids circulation.

Standing Knee Raise

This is a swimming exercise that helps to build strength and mobility and can be performed at your own speed. Standing knee raises are performed against the side of the pool wall in waist-high water. With both feet flat on the floor, raise one knee until it is even with your hip, pause and then straighten your leg outwards and hold for a few seconds. Then lower your leg slowly, keeping it straight, and repeat this process with the other leg. Feel free to move faster after your body is warmed up. 

Underwater Squats

In slightly shallower water, place your feet hip-width apart, bend your knees and squat down in the water until you reach a position similar to sitting in a chair. Inhale as you squat down, and exhale as you stand up, making sure that you keep your back straight and your arms bent close to your body with your palms facing down. Underwater squats help to build muscle in the body and improve strength in both the upper and lower back.

Important Things to Consider

You may sweat more than you realise when you’re performing swimming exercises in the water, so remember to drink plenty of fluids before and after you work out. Remember to always use caution when exercising in the water, use a floatation device if you are not a strong swimmer and try to go swimming with a workout partner. As well as providing an extra level of safety, they also bring different strategies to a workout and it helps to have someone to share the experience with.

At Backworks, we provide a range of services that can help you with back pain, including chiropractic, sports massage, and sports rehabilitation. It’s what we do and it’s what we are good at. We also provide online consultations for people who are unable to attend the clinic.