Large muscles of your abdomen, upper legs, and buttocks attach to your spine and pelvic bones. They help stabilize and protect your spine during activity and sports. Weakness in these muscles may be part of the reason you first injured your back. After resting and treating your symptoms after your injury, these muscles will most likely be even weaker and less flexible.
Getting these muscles back to the point where they support your spine well is called core strengthening. Your health care provider and physical therapist will teach you exercises to strengthen these muscles. It is important to do these exercises correctly to prevent further injury.
Once you are ready to return to your sport:
- Warm up with an easy movement such as walking. This will help increase blood flow to the muscles and ligaments in your back.
- Stretch the muscles in your upper and lower back and your hamstrings (large muscles in the back of your thighs) and quadriceps (large muscles in the front of your thighs).
When you are ready to begin the movements and actions involved in your sport, start slowly. Before going full force, take part in the sport at a less intense level. See how you feel that night and the next day before you slowly increase the force and intensity of your movements.