Note: This blog post is from Personal Trainer Sarah Chalhoub's blog, MyHealthyish Ways.
A few months back, I wrote about my scoliosis and my fear of going to the chiropractor. Since then I've gone from going three times a week to only once every 4-6 weeks! I feel a lot better most days, although there are still days where my back just doesn't want to cooperate with the things I want to do. Consistently going to the chiropractor and exercises the doctor recommended has helped me get to this point.
My chiropractor recommended a few exercises, including planks and single leg glute bridges, that I started incorporating into my everyday exercise routine. I figured I'd put them into my exercise routine everyday, 8and bam I'd feel 100% good as new! Unfortunately it took a lot more time and effort, but I'm here to tell you that they do help as long as you ACTUALLY DO THE EXERCISES and YOU DO THEM CONSISTENTLY! I even have my clients do these on a regular basis to strengthen their backs and core.
Planks weren't bad at all, but single leg glute bridges on the other hand were not my first choice! Both leg glute bridges, or hip thrusters as some people call them, are in my weekly leg day routine. They're easy, I get a good booty burn with them, and my back doesn't feel weak at all while doing them. On the other hand, single leg glute bridges hurt me. I felt everything burn, and my back felt so weak I was surprised how much I needed to do them. To be honest, I didn't want to keep doing them and I sort of dread having to still, but the benefits of that specific exercise is so worth the two or three minutes of pain until it's over!
Benefits of Single Leg Glute Bridges or Hip Thrusters:
- Strengthens lower back muscles
- Improves hip mobility
- Strengthens glute muscles and hamstring muscles
- Incorporates core/abdominal muscle activation
Strengthening my lower back muscles is the biggest incentive for why I have incorporated this exercise into my routine. In my opinion, it's helping minimize my scoliosis pain! It definitely doesn't happen overnight, but over the last two months or so I can feel my lower back getting stronger.
For those of you who aren't sure what this exercise is or how to do it, here are some progression pictures for you to utilize. Starting with both leg glute bridge to single leg glute bridge with weight. I would recommend starting with the first picture and then progressing through to the more advanced exercises. It never hurts to start slow, find your activity level, and improve from there.