6 Exercises to Relieve Low Back Pain from Standing All Day

Here are some exercises and stretches you can use to help relieve lower back pain from standing too long. These exercises focus on strengthening the back muscles, and stretching the lower back to decrease tightness.

If you’re like me, and spend most of your day on your feet, you’re going to put some strain on the lower back. Eventually, this might start to show up as a nagging ache, and the next thing you know it’s full-blown low back pain.

It’s no secret that standing for long periods of time has been proven to be associated with an increase of lower back pain. Standing all day places significant strain on the muscles and joints of the back, and may cause long-term issues.

In this blog post I want to go over some of my personal favorite stretches and exercises to help relieve low back pain from standing all day. They’re straight forward and can be done at home or the office. Let’s take a look.

If you’re starting out as a beginner, go slowly and lightly. You should not feel pain while doing them.

Toe-Touch Stretch

Stand upright with your feet together. Reach your arms up above your head and lock your hands.

  1. Stretch upwards as high as you can towards the ceiling.
  2. Then, slowly bring you arms down in front of you. When you are level with your shoulders, start to bend at the hips. Continue down keeping your legs  straight until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings without pushing yourself. Don’t go any further than is comfortable.
  3. Hold the stretch for 8 seconds. You should feel a nice stretch in your hamstrings, lower and upper back.
  4. Once complete, go back up to the top.
  5. Repeat the exercise 5 times.

Twisting Wall Stretch

Stand sideways next to an empty wall with your right shoulder roughly 8 inches away.

  1. Twist around to your right until you feel the stretch.
  2. Place your hands on the wall to increase the stretch a little further. Make sure you are comfortable and don’t over-stretch to the point of pain.
  3. Hold the pose for 5 seconds. Then return back to face the front in a relaxed position.
  4. Repeat the exercise 10 times.
  5. Swap sides and repeat on your left 10 more times.

Side Bends

Stand upright with your hands by your side and tense your stomach muscles.

  1. Slide your right-hand down your right side until you feel a stretch in your left side.
  2. Hold the stretch for 5 seconds and slide back up.
  3. Repeat 9 more times.
  4. Once complete, repeat again on the left side 10 times.

Back Extension

Lie on your stomach, and prop yourself on your elbows, lengthening your spine. Keep your shoulders back.

  1. Keeping your neck long, arch your back up by pushing down on your hands.
  2. You should feel a gentle stretch in the stomach muscles as you arch backwards.
  3. Breathe and hold for 8 seconds before returning to a relaxed starting position.
  4. Repeat the exercise 10 times.

Lying Knee Rolls

Lie on your back on the floor and place a small flat cushion under your head. Slide your feet up towards your bottom so your knees are bent. Keep your upper body relaxed and your chin gently tucked into your chest.

  1. Roll your knees to your left side, followed by your pelvis, keeping both shoulders on the floor.
  2. Hold the stretch for 3 seconds and return to the starting position.
  3. Repeat 20 times, alternating left to right.

Pelvic Tilts

Lie on your back with a cushion or yoga mat under you for protection. Bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor a hips width apart. Keep your upper body relaxed and your chin tucked in.

  1. Gently flatten your low back into the floor and contract your stomach muscles.
  2. Now tilt your pelvis towards your heels until you feel a gentle arch in your lower back, feeling your back muscles contracting. Hold for 3 seconds and the return to the starting position.
  3. Repeat 15 times, tilting your pelvis back and forth in a slow rocking motion.


St. Joseph, MI Chiropractic CenterDr. Michael Rowe

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