Hi, I’m Ashley Borden, and welcome to Perfect
Form. What if I told you that you don’t have to live with lower back pain? Consider this
the best workout you have never done. It will help get rid of lower back pain, prevent future
pains and even flatten your belly. So let’s get started. First thing I want to start with
is myofascial release–releasing your psoas. We’re gonna start with the red ball. And you
can use–this is two pound weighted ball. You can also use a softball. But it’s important
that you have the height because that’s what is going to help release the psoas. And the
way you find it is: Finger on the belly button, finger on your hip bone and right in between
that line is your psoas. Now, I’m gonna start on this side, so you can see what I’m doing.
Put the ball there. You’re gonna come–lie down all the way on your belly. And I’m sitting
up because I need a little bit more pressure, but you can also start lying down and completely
relaxed down. Or you can sit up. But it’s really important that you just release your
belly, release your glutes and let it kind of sink over the ball and sink in there. And
I would hold this about a minute to two minutes on each side. And that will also really help
to open up your lower back. The next thing I want to do is using the roller. I want to
roll out your lower back and your hamstrings. Now, it’s really important that if you have
any type of structural issue with your lower back, I don’t want you rolling it out. I’m
using a soft foam for the roller back. If you’re using a PVC pipe, or something at home,
I wouldn’t do your lower back with such a hard surface. But this guy’s soft enough that
it kind of feels good. So you’re gonna start and just gently roll up and down on that lower
part of your back. You can kinda go a little bit side to side. Keep the belly button pulled
in. And then I wanna move to your hamstrings. Because a lot of times your hamstrings, when
they’re super tight, that also pulls on your lower back. So remember, it’s not always the
pain site of where the pain is. But your pain source can be from somewhere else. So that’s
why we’re gonna start with the hamstrings. And you wanna start with that roller right–I’d
say always like I’m sitting on a park bench, so you can get the position. Extend the leg
out and then you’re gonna pull back and forth from your core. So I pull back, go forward.
And if it’s not hard enough, and you can’t feel it, cross one leg over. And back and
forth, right on that hamstring. You can hold where you feel a sticking point. Side to side.
Really chew it up. And if this position is too hard for you to get into, you can always
put the roller on top of a bench and kinda sit to the side with one leg and roll back
and forth on one leg that’s on the roller. It’s a better way to get into it, if this
too uncomfortable for your back. Okay, so now that we’ve opened up the psoas, your lower
back and your hamstrings, let’s get into the stretch series for your hips and your legs
and your lower back. First thing I wanna start with is Pigeon Stretch. Now Pigeon– it’s
important that when you get into the position that your knee is a little bit outside of
your hip. You’re gonna crawl that back foot back. Go on your forearms. Curl your back
toe underneath. You have a good space between that first and second toe. And I want you
to push that back heel. Squeeze the glute and then drop the knee down. So you’re gonna
push back through that heel, squeeze the glute, hold the belly in and then drop the knee down.
So I’m pushing, squeezing. And again, I don’t want you to have your head dropped down. Keep
that head aligned with your spine. And you’re gonna go 10 times on each leg. And again,
if this is too painful, or you’re feeling pain in your knee, go back, roll out a little
bit and then come back to the position. The more you roll out, the more you’ll get deeper
into the stretch. Next stretch I wanna do is called a Cobra Stretch, and that’s gonna
help stretch all of your abdominal wall, which, also, when you’re really tight through your
abs, it can also hurt your lower back. So tight abs don’t necessarily mean ‘tight abs’.
It can also mean ‘tight’ in a way that actually doesn’t help the function of your body. So
you’re gonna start on your belly. Okay. You wanna have your thumbs right in line with
the base of your chest, with your finger tips forward. My toes are down. My elbows are in
and my shoulders are pushing away from my ears. I don’t wanna see this position, okay?
Because that just goes right into your trap. So I’m gonna tuck my tush underneath me, squeeze
my bum, pull my belly in, pull my palms back and then push up. And I’m gonna hold. My eyes
come up. I hold for about 5 seconds, with my glute tight, my belly pulled in and then
bringing it back down. Reset. You wanna feel like you’re trying to pull the yoga mat back
with your palms, so it’s kinda doing this, but, not literally. Shoulders away from your
ears, squeeze your glutes, pull your belly in, reach up. And it’s not about how high
you go. It’s about how connected you feel to the stretch. And then, bring it all the
way back down. Very nice. Now, let’s go to a Cat and Dog. So Cat and Dog Position also
helps with the mobility of your spine, so you feel a stretch through your spinal cord.
When you’re in Cat and Dog Position, you want your finger tips to be very wide, you’re hands
are directly underneath your shoulders and your knee is directly in line with your hip.
Toes are curled underneath you. So you wanna start with that pushing away from the floor.
Your elbows are internally rotated. You’re not sitting in this position, okay? You’re
gonna inhale through nose for nothing. And then, I want you to exhale. Tuck your chin
to your throat. Push away from the floor. And notice how my elbows are rotating out.
Hold. And then rotate the heart and chest up to the ceiling. So I’m still pushing my
shoulders away from my ears. I’m not sitting lazy in my shoulders. And again, you’re gonna
exhale. Tuck your chin to your throat. Push up. Try to squeeze your glutes in this position.
Push your toes in the ground. And then rotate your heart and chest up to the ceiling, pushing
your shoulders away from your ears. So now that we’ve stretched, let’s get into the strengthening
part of it, so you can really connect to your lower ab and understand where that’s coming
from when you’re engaging your core. I’m gonna use the roller. It’s a great tool to help
connect to that lower ab. You’re gonna lie lengthwise on it, all the way down. So important,
important tips: You wanna make sure your feet are not turned out, okay? Palms are gonna
be up. And you are gonna have a natural curve to your back. I don’t want you starting in
this position, where your tailbone’s tucked underneath you because you’re trying to make
it as flat as possible. All I want you to do is I want you to Kegel, which is, squeeze
your p-hole muscle, okay? Engage that lower ab. And you wanna start with your eye line
looking about–up and away kind of towards the top of the ceiling. If you’re eyes are
too far up, it closes your spinal cord. And if they’re too low, it creates too much tension
in your neck. So, eyes are just in natural position, looking up toward the ceiling. You’re
gonna engage your pelvic floor first by squeezing p-hole muscle, okay? You’re gonna flex the
foot as you lift. Bring it up. And then slowly bring the foot back down, without letting
anything shift and without letting your back pop. So you’re gonna Kegel. Flex the foot.
Lift. Slowly bring it back down. And that’s 1. Kegel. Flex the foot. Lift. Slowly bring
it back down. 2. So as I’m going down, I am squeezing even harder with that lower ab.
And then, you’re gonna do both sides. You should feel–it’s not the same kind of pain
that you feel when you’re doing a crunch, where you feel that contraction. But it’s
a deep muscle feeling in the lower part of your pelvic floor that you’ll feel when you’re
doing it right. If you’re doing it wrong, it will look like this. Okay? You’re back’s
gonna arch every time you’re coming down. So I like the roller because it gives you
a little reference for your body, so you can feel engaged with that lower ab. And that’s
an excellent way to connect to your pelvic floor. Next thing I wanna do is called a Bird
Dog Hold. Bird Dog is great because it works the lower back. It works your glutes. It works
your entire core. You don’t need any equipment. And again, you’re gonna start on all fours–that
same position. If you can, you know, use a mirror when you do it, so you can see that
your position looks right–that your shoulders are lined up with your elbows, I mean, your
shoulders are lined up with your wrist and the knee and the hip. You’re gonna push away
from the floor. Internally rotate those elbows. Pull the belly in. I want you to extend your
back foot, but I’m not shifting all the way over. I’m still keeping my hip bone square
to the floor. And then, I’m gonna extend my opposite thumb to the ceiling, as I reach
out. And I’m gonna hold from there. And you wanna hold for about a 30 second hold, really
maintaining that strong core position. Push your back glute. Squeeze your bum. Pull your
belly in. And push that thumb to the ceiling. And then, you’re gonna bring it down and repeat
to the other side. It’s such a good stabilizing exercise. It’s so good for engaging your core.
And a lot of people think: ‘Oh, it’ so elementary, I don’t need to do it’. But it’s an excellent
part of your warm-up or part of your workout. Next thing I wanna do is an Alternating Marching
Heel Bridge. Excellent, also, for your glutes. You’re glutes are part of your core. It’s
not all just right up here. It goes all the way around. You’re gonna start on your back.
The way you find the position with the feet: Extend your fingertips out and have your heels
just touch your fingertips. Feet are straight, again, not turned out. Palms are up. Same
eye line position. You’re gonna push your hips all the way up. Tuck that tailbone. Squeeze
your glutes. If you feel any pain in your knees, walk your feet out just a teeny bit,
or bring them in a little bit, just to kind of find a good position for you. Okay, you’re
just gonna give me teeny, teeny lift. And down. Lift, down. Lift, down. Now, notice
when I’m lifting up that foot, I’m not dropping in my opposite glute, okay? So the key is
when you lift that other foot with your little march–that you’re keeping those glutes engaged
and you’re keeping that core tight. And then, if you need a little bit more advanced, you
can lift up–extend and down, extend and down. Or you can do a leg press, up and down,
through one glute. But I definitely love to start with a Glute March. And you can see,
if you drop your hips down, you know that you have a little bit of a weakness in your
glutes and you need to work on that stability. So that is your 3 part approach for your lower
back and for your entire core. Go ahead and use this series on its own, or use it within
your workout that you already have established. And remember, the most important thing: I
want you to connect to your body.