Back pain is a common ailment, but it is particularly dangerous for divers. It is generally agreed that divers need to have a reasonably good level of overall fitness. As divers need to lift tanks, climb ladders and be in good physical condition to ensure self-rescue, as well as helping other divers who may be in the water, back pain can in fact prevent divers from entering the water at all.
Diving uses different muscles groups to those you might use in other sports. As such, it is important for divers to incorporate some regular exercise routines into their day to ensure that these muscles are strengthened and therefore, less prone to suffering injury.
When To Avoid Exercise
If you have recently suffered a back injury or started experiencing back pain, then you should avoid beginning exercises routines. Ideally, you should wait between seven to ten days from the day that your back pain began to improve before beginning any exercise regime. Always follow the advice of your physician or therapist, especially if you are using medication to control your back pain.
Prepare for exercise by wearing appropriate, loose-fitting clothing. Remember to start and end each exercise routine session with some gentle stretches. Aim to repeat each of the following exercises 5-10 times. The more frequently you do them, the easier they will become.
Back Extension Stretch
Lie face down on the floor and either place your hands against the side of your body, or else interlock your fingers underneath your forehead. Slowly lift your head and shoulders off the floor. Be sure to keep your hips on the floor. If you find this position too difficult, place your hands on the floor beside your head instead and push up by straightening your arms. Hold this position for about 5 seconds. Return to the starting position on the floor and repeat.
Standing Wall Squats
Stand with your back against a flat wall surface. Ensure that your feet are hip-width apart. Your arms can either be placed at the sides of your body or else held straight out in front of you to help you balance as you complete the exercise. Gently begin to bend your knees, lowering yourself. Make sure that you keep your back against the wall. Stop once you reach a squatting position, in which your thighs are parallel to the floor and your knees are bent at 90 degrees (to a right angle). Hold this position for a few seconds and then gently slide back up to your original standing position. Repeat the exercise.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Slowly lift your heels off the ground, until you are on the balls of your feet. Hold this position for a second or two and then gently place your heels back down until they just make contact with the floor. Your arms can either be at the sides of your body or raised above your head to help you reach and balance. Repeat the exercise.
Kneeling Leg Lifts
Kneel on the floor and place your arms out to the sides at shoulder-height to help you balance during the exercise. Pull one knee in towards your chest. Slowly extend that same leg out behind you, as straight as you can, and then lift it slightly. Hold this position for 10 seconds and then return to your starting position. Repeat with the second leg.
Lie down with your back on the floor and your knees bent. Make sure that your feet are flat on the floor. Gently raise your head and shoulders off the floor. With your hands, reach towards your knees. Hold this position for two seconds, ensuring that your abdominal muscles are tightened. Slowly release the hold and return to your starting position. Repeat the exercise.
Incorporating a mixture of exercise types into your daily routine will allow you to develop and strengthen the flexibility in your back, hips and thighs. Fundamentally, this will help you to prevent back injuries. Maintaining a regular exercise schedule will ensure that you get the most benefit from the exercises and will help guarantee that you are fit enough to go safely into the water.
About the Author
Molly Crockett is a regular writer at Big assignments and State of writing. Her passion for traveling has taken her to exciting locations across the world. She is a prolific travel blogger, regularly contributing articles on a range of travel topics, including her own experiences and her latest personal development ideas to numerous online websites, including Academized.