Close this search box.

Walking: A simple step to mitigate low back pain


New research highlights the benefits of walking as a preventative measure for low back pain, a condition affecting approximately 10% of the global population. Regular walking helps reduce the recurrence of back pain and extends the period between pain flares.

Study insights

A study published in The Lancet followed over 700 adults who had recently experienced low back pain. Participants were divided into two groups: one engaged in a structured walking program and received educational sessions from a physiotherapist, while the control group received no such intervention. Findings revealed that those in the walking group encountered fewer back pain issues and enjoyed longer durations without pain than their counterparts in the control group.

Why walking helps

Walking encourages gentle movement and strengthening of the spinal structures and muscles, contributing to stress relief and the release of endorphins. Education on pain management provided during the study also played a crucial role in helping participants manage their pain more effectively.

Walking recommendations

The study encouraged walking five times a week for at least 30 minutes each session. Adjustments were made based on individual factors such as age, BMI, and personal goals, ensuring a tailored approach to each participant’s needs.

Additional tips for managing low back pain

  • Strengthen core muscles to stabilize the spine.
  • Stretch hamstrings regularly.
  • Incorporate wall sits into your routine.
  • Reduce stress as it can contribute to muscle tension.
  • Maintain good posture and take frequent breaks from prolonged sitting.
  • Adopt a healthy diet to minimize inflammation.

When to consult a doctor

While most cases of low back pain improve within a few days, persistent or severe pain should be evaluated by a health care professional. A comprehensive evaluation by a physical therapist can also provide a personalized exercise program to prevent future episodes.

Walking is a simple and effective strategy to manage and prevent low back pain, making it a valuable addition to health regimens.