The Fitness Fixer
The Fitness Fixer

Fast Fitness - Push Ups with Neutral Spine

Here is Friday Fast Fitness - how do abs help your back? Only when you use them to:

  1. Abdominal muscles don't help your back by themselves. Support is not automatic. They don't fix your back pain by being stronger. Strengthening abdominal muscles doesn't make you hold neutral position (support you). Holding neutral strengthens your abs.

  2. In the post Fast Fitness - Strengthen by Changing Your Plank Reader David from Belgium showed changing the plank from overarched lower spine to neutral spine. He pushes up from the floor into an arched position, then fixes it. Readers asked to see how to push up from the floor (or from the bottom of a pushup) with neutral spine.

  3. David made us another video. Click the > arrow to see the first 20 seconds show holding neutral - green check mark. Next 15 seconds repeat the same push up, but with over-arched spine, marked with a red X. Then he corrects spine angle until the end - green check again. Can you see the difference? Can you do the difference?


if the video does not load, try

Letting your lower spine cave inward (hyperextend) under your body weight means you are not using core muscles to prevent it. Hyper-extension, is also called hyperlordosis (too much lordosis) and swayback. Hyperlordosis bangs and abrades the joints, called facets, of the spine. Hyperlordosis can also pinch a disc that is already degenerating or bulging, making disc pain worse.

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Movie by David of Belgium -

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About the Author


Dr. Bookspan is an award-winning scientist whose goal is to make exercise easier and healthier.