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Backpacker Magazine – November 2010

Hiking Exercises: Beef Up Your Lower Back

Try this exercise to give your lower back the strength you need.

by: Kristin Bjornsen, Illustrations by Bryon Thompson

Strengthen your lower back with this exercise.
Strengthen your lower back with this exercise.

To prevent aches in your lumbar region, tone the muscles with the Superman.

The exercise
Lie on your belly, then lift your legs, chest, and arms off the ground. Hold this arched, crescent position for 30 seconds. Repeat three times.

>>BECOME A MILEAGE MONSTER
See our essential exercises and tips to tackle the most miles possible.


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READERS COMMENTS

Aaron
May 06, 2011

Agreed with Eric. While the aforementioned exercises are great, the body needs a variety of core exercises to become truly resilient. In addition, compound exercises that recruit multiple sets of muscle such as pullups with a leg raise or single-leg pushups/planks will really push the body towards balanced strength.

Eric Nelson
Jan 25, 2011

One thing I have learned from having an injured back is that all the core muscles are equally important, and having an extra 20lbs around the middle is not helpful. The two exercises (Supermans and planks) are good, but they only focus on one region. We also need to do some kind of direct ab strengthening (crunches, sit - ups, leg raises)and work on the oblique muscles which get a lot of stress when twisting on a rocky trail with weight. We don't need a six-pack, but regular (3x per week) and varied exercises are as equally important as logging miles on the trail. Your morning routine will be much easier after having slept on the ground all night.

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