How to Lose Weight With a Bad Back

Wanna know how to lose weight with a bad back ? Is chronic back pain holding you back from the healthy lifestyle that you dream about?

Maybe you have an old injury that still haunts you or perhaps your lifestyle causes significant strain on your back muscles. For example, it is common to find that overweight patients complain about having a bad back.

Despite the pain, many patients still want to exercise to reach their weight loss goals. Knowing which exercises will exacerbate the pain is a key step in forming a regular exercise routine. If you want to start making healthier lifestyle choices, it’s time to take a closer look at how to lose weight with a bad back.


How to Lose Weight With a Bad Back – Does Exercise Really Matter?


Combatting your chronic back pain and getting more physically active can seem like an insurmountable obstacle. In fact, it leads many people to wonder whether the effort is really worth it. The truth is that exercise matters a great deal, and it may even help to eliminate some of the pain that you are currently experiencing.

How to lose weight with a bad back

In a recent study, it was determined that disc degeneration in the spinal column was more common among overweight or obese patients. The extra weight puts more pressure on the discs, leading to greater wear and tear over the years. Losing weight can help to reduce the pressure on your spinal column and strengthen the muscles that stabilize the spine.

While it is possible to lose weight naturally through your diet, exercise is equally important. You can still exercise for weight loss even if you have back pain. Here are just a few of the exercises you could try to strengthen your core muscles and help you shed a few pounds.


Partial Crunches


Are you looking for a surefire way to get those abdominal muscles working? Most people immediately think of sit-ups when they want to strengthen their core muscles. Unfortunately, these can cause significant stress to the lower back and exacerbate your pain.

Partial crunches are a great way to fire up your abs without increasing pain in your lower back. Position yourself with your back flat on the floor, knees bent, and feet flat. Place your hands behind your neck and take a deep breath. Raise your shoulders off the ground on the out breath and hold for one second before lowering back to the ground.

Repeating this action ten to fifteen times is a great way to help stabilize your spine. To avoid injury, you should make sure that your feet, tailbone, and lower back are touching the floor at all times.

How to lose weight with a bad back



Taking a long walk is a great form of exercise that is still gentle on your back. The low-impact nature of a brisk walk can get your heart pumping harder without the risk of injury to your back. Walking around your neighborhood or on a treadmill may not seem like you’re doing much, but the benefits from a simple walk are tremendous:

  • Brings oxygen and nutrients to your muscles
  • Builds stamina
  • Gives an energy boost
  • Reduces stiffness

If your back does bother you after a long stroll, try breaking it into smaller chunks. Take three ten-minute walks per day while you build up your stamina and muscles. This strategy is often more achievable if you aren’t accustomed to working out regularly.


Banded Kickbacks


All you need to perform this simple move is an exercise band that stretches with your movements. A banded kickback is easy on your back muscles while still helping you to build up core strength and leg strength. You can perform this exercise with just a few simple steps:

  • Position yourself on your hands and knees.
  • Create a loop with the exercise band, holding the ends with your hand.
  • Place your foot in the end of the loop on the same side as the hand you are holding the band with.
  • Push your foot straight back until it is level with your back.
  • Repeat this exercise five to ten times.
  • Switch sides.


Wall Sits

Are you more interested in building up the muscle in your legs? Wall sits are a classic exercise that seriously increases your strength and can help you to shed a few pounds in the process. All you need is a sturdy wall that you can lean against.

Stand approximately one foot away from the wall. Position yourself so that your back is flat against the wall and slide down until your knees are bent at a ninety-degree angle. Slowly count to ten and rise back up to standing. Repeat this exercise ten to fifteen times if you really want to feel the burn.

In an alternative version, you can also position an exercise ball between your back and the wall. The setup for this exercise is slightly more complicated, but it may be more comfortable for your back.

How to lose weight with a bad back

Half Pushups

Many people lack the core strength and upper body strength required to perform a proper pushup. Without the correct form, you can do even more harm to an already painful back. This is why a half pushup is recommended instead.

Take your typical pushup position with the hands slightly wider than the shoulders. Squeeze the abdominal muscles and lower your chest to the floor slowly. Once you reach the floor, lower your knees and use them to help push yourself back up to the top of your pushup. This increases your odds of maintaining the proper form and decreases your risk of worsened back pain.


Exercise Recovery


Know you know how to lose weight with a bad back, getting into the habit of exercising can be a challenge for anyone, particularly if they struggle with back pain. Your muscles are bound to be sore after the first few workouts. Make sure you take the time to help your muscles recover faster.

Exercising is extremely beneficial for your spine and could help to alleviate some of your chronic pain. However, you must use caution when performing these exercises. Pay close attention to your form to avoid injuring your back further. If you experience pain from any of these exercises be sure to discontinue them immediately and consult with your doctor or chiropractor.

This article was written by Dr. Brent Wells. He is the founder of Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab. Originally from California, he holds a doctorate from Western States Chiropractic College in Oregon. He has worked as a chiropractor for over 20 years and is a member of the American Chiropractic Association.

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