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Back Pain Center

Lower Back Bone Spur Exercises

author image Aubrey Bailey
Aubrey Bailey has been writing health-related articles since 2009. Her articles have appeared in ADVANCE for Physical Therapy & Rehab Medicine. She holds a Bachelor of Science in physical therapy and Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University at Buffalo, as well as a post-professional Doctor of Physical Therapy from Utica College. Dr. Bailey is also a certified hand therapist.
Lower Back Bone Spur Exercises
Bone spurs can put pressure on nerves in your lower back. Photo Credit: stockdevil/iStock/Getty Images

Low back pain is common. In fact, according to a study published by Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, it is the most common cause of difficulty with daily activities and missed work in the United States. Bone spurs are growths that can develop over time in any joint of the body. They aren't always problematic — unless they pinch nerves or other structures around them. In the lower back, bone spurs can pinch nerves that travel to your legs. Bone spurs are one cause of low back pain, but exercises can help relieve pain caused by this condition.

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Many yoga poses help decrease pain caused by bone spurs.
Many yoga poses help decrease pain caused by bone spurs. Photo Credit: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images

Prayer Stretch/Child's Pose

The prayer stretch — also called the child's pose — helps open up space around your bone spurs, relieving pain and pressure.

Step 1

Kneel on a firm but padded surface and sit back on your heels. Reach both arms straight over your head.

Step 2

Bend forward and rest your chest on your thighs. Let your chin drop down toward your chest.

Step 3

Slowly walk your fingers forward until you feel a stretch in your low back. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then relax. Repeat three times.

Read more: Yoga for Lower Back Arthritis Relief

Progress your hamstring stretch by performing it standing up.
Progress your hamstring stretch by performing it standing up. Photo Credit: fizkes/iStock/Getty Images

Hamstring Stretch

Tight hamstring muscles can pull on your low back, increasing pain if you have bone spurs.

Step 1

Sit with your legs straight out in front of you. Bend one knee and pull your heel in toward the opposite inner thigh.

Step 2

Bend forward at your hips and reach both hands toward your toes. Stop when you feel a stretch along the back of your thigh.

Step 3

Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then relax. Perform three times on each leg.

Many exercises can be performed with an exercise ball.
Many exercises can be performed with an exercise ball. Photo Credit: turk_stock_photographer/iStock/Getty Images

Hip Twists

Strong abdominal muscles help support your low back to help decrease pain.

Step 1

Lie on your back and prop your bent legs up on the exercise ball. Press down through your heels to hold the ball securely in place.

Step 2

Tighten your abdominal muscles and flatten your low back against the ground. Rotate your knees to one side as far as possible while keeping your hips on the floor. Hold for three seconds, then return to the center.

Step 3

Rotate to each side 10 to 20 times.

Butt Lift

The butt lift exercise — also called bridging — strengthens muscles that support your low back.

Step 1

Lie on your back and bend your knees. Rest your feet flat on the ground. Cross your arms over your chest.

Step 2

Squeeze your buttocks together and lift your hips straight up toward the ceiling. Lift as high as possible while keeping your shoulder blades on the ground.

Step 3

Hold for 2 to 3 seconds, then slowly lower back down. Repeat 10 times.

Read more: Butt Bridge Exercise

Dead Bugs

Dead bugs are named for the position the exercise is performed in — on your back with your arms and legs sticking up.

Step 1

Lie on your back. Tighten your abdominal muscles and press your low back into the floor. Raise both arms up toward the ceiling with your elbows straight. Bend your knees and bring them up as if you are sitting in a chair.

Step 2

Keeping your abs tight and back pressed against the ground, slowly reach one arm overhead. At the same time, slowly lower the opposite leg down toward the floor.

Step 3

Bring your arm and leg back to the starting position, and repeat on the opposite side. Alternate sides and repeat 10 to 20 times.

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