Running + Low Back Pain

How is Running Connected to Low Back Pain?

Weak deep core muscles (rarely trained) lead to over-compensation of superficial core muscles (often trained). Unfortunately, 14% of runners experience low back pain each year.

How Should I Keep My Back Healthy?

Train your deep core muscles! And what’s the best way to do this? Add a rotational component to core strengthening exercises, or do core exercises that activate muscles diagonal to each other.

My favorite is the old “bird dog” exercise. Hold each position for 10 seconds, progressing up to 60 seconds, to train the endurance component. If you still experience pain, come and see us—we are here to help!

(**Follow this link to learn more about the recent study published regarding runners and low back pain.)


—Ben Jensen, PT, DPT, OCS

Bird Dog Exercise