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TRX for Lower Back Pain: Benefits and Exercises

TRX for lower back pain

Lower back pain impacts about 80% of people at some point in their lives. While there are numerous factors that can lead to lower back discomfort, it frequently arises from a lack of harmony among our muscles, particularly those located in the core and pelvic regions.


Research shows that exercises blending cardio and strength training can help manage back pain by building a strong, flexible foundation to support the spine. This is where TRX resistance training shines with its focus on functional core strength and back muscles.


However, back pain differs for each person. Before starting any new program, check with your doctor that these exercises suit your health needs.



How Core Strengthening Can Relieve Lower Back Pain


The lower back supports our body’s weight while allowing flexible movement thanks to the spine. This flexibility, however, comes with the need for stability, primarily provided by the core muscles.


Contrary to common belief, the core extends beyond the abdominals. It encompasses deep back muscles, hip muscles, quadriceps, and hamstrings. These muscles collectively act like a natural back brace, offering stability and support to the spine and pelvis. Just as a physical brace can provide temporary relief from back pain, our internal ‘muscle brace’ plays a crucial role in maintaining posture and preventing pain. The key, however, is in strengthening these muscles. When these muscles fail to provide necessary support, the spine bears undue pressure, leading to pain. This is where TRX training comes into play.



How TRX Alleviates Lower Back Pain

TRX, or Total Resistance Exercises, are designed to enhance core functional strength, flexibility, and muscular control. By engaging in TRX exercises, you’re not just working on isolated muscle groups; you’re training your body to function as a cohesive unit. This holistic approach ensures that your core muscles are strong enough to support your spine, reducing the likelihood of muscle strains that lead to back pain and giving your back and spine more relief.


Here’s how TRX training specifically helps with lower back pain:


  • Targets Neglected Deep Core Muscles: TRX exercises focus on the deeper core muscles often overlooked in traditional workouts like crunches and sit-ups. These sheetlike muscles and extensions around the vertebrae are crucial for pain relief and overall core stability. 
  • Promotes Muscular Control and Spine Stability: TRX training engages the deeper muscles in movements that require control rather than raw power. New research is pointing to the importance of coordination and control of the spine as essential for the strengthening and support needed to prevent and relieve lower back pain.
  • Incorporates Instability for Better ResultsStudies show that adding instability to exercises, as TRX does, has been shown to be effective in relieving lower back pain. This approach challenges and strengthens the core muscles more effectively, enhancing stability and support for the lower back.
  • Strengthens the Spine: Research shows that any form of exercise is key in preventing recurring lower back pain. TRX training, as part of your physical activity routine, strengthens the spine, bones, and cartilage, protecting against age-related degeneration and improving blood flow to the spinal discs.
  • Low-Impact and Easy on the Joints: TRX training is designed to be low-impact, making it easier on the joints compared to many other forms of exercise. This is particularly beneficial for individuals with lower back pain, as it minimizes the risk of exacerbating existing conditions.
  • Improves Range of Motion and Flexibility: Regular TRX workouts can significantly improve your range of motion and flexibility. This is crucial for maintaining a healthy back, as increased flexibility helps reduce the likelihood of strains and injuries that can lead to or worsen back pain.


TRX Exercises for Lower Back Pain

Virtually every TRX exercise strengthens the core muscles surrounding the lumbar spine to some degree. When performed properly and progressively, targeted TRX movements can reinforce the back while alleviating discomfort. These exercises enhance strength and flexibility to help resolve back troubles.


TRX Quadruped

This exercise improves core stability and balance, which helps in reducing lower back strain. It focuses on the core and lower back. Maintain a neutral spine and engage your core throughout the exercise. Aim for 8-10 reps per side, over 2 sets.


TRX Hamstring Curl

This exercise strengthens the hamstrings and glutes, providing essential support to the lower back. It targets the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. Keep your hips elevated throughout the movement to maximize effectiveness. Perform 2 sets of 10-12 reps, with a 30-second rest between sets.


TRX Standing Plank

The TRX Standing Plank engages core muscles, enhancing the stability of the lower back. It primarily targets the core and lower back. Ensure your body maintains a straight line from head to heels for proper form. Hold the position for 20-30 seconds, completing 2-3 sets.


TRX Torso Rotation

TRX Torso Rotation increases spinal mobility and strengthens the obliques, supporting the lower back. It targets the obliques and lower back. Rotate from your torso, not your arms, to ensure proper technique. Perform 10-12 reps per side, in 2 sets.


TRX Hip Hinge (Single Leg)

This exercise is key for strengthening the glutes and hamstrings, which are crucial for lower back support. It targets the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back. Keep your back straight and hinge at the hips for correct form. Do 8-10 reps per leg, across 2 sets.


TRX Standing Hip Drop

The TRX Standing Hip Drop strengthens the obliques and stabilizes the lower back. It focuses on the obliques and lower back. Keep your hips aligned and move them sideways only. Complete 10-12 reps per side, in 2 sets.


TRX Squats

TRX Squats strengthen the lower body, improving overall support for the lower back. This exercise targets the quadriceps, glutes, and lower back. Ensure to keep your weight on your heels and squat as if sitting back in a chair. Perform 2 sets of 12-15 reps, with a 30-second rest between sets.


Tips for Strength Training for Lower Back Pain

When designing a back-focused strength program, keep these tips in mind:


  • Listen to your body: Back off if exercises that cause pain or don’t seem right.
  • Stay in neutral spine at all times: Neutral spine refers to the natural arch of the back, where no excessive curvature or rounding occurs in segments. Before training, get familiar with your neutral stance by standing upright or walking around while maintaining a strong core. Here are some tips on helping you dial in on that neutral spine. 
  • Train core and glutes first: Prioritize exercises for the core stabilizers and glutes to better support neutral spine.
  • Maintain proper form: Brace core and maintain neutral spine to maximize gains and prevent tissue irritation.
  • Build movement competency: Master basic patterns like the hip hinge using bands or TRX before going heavy.
  • Progress gradually: Start with higher reps and lower loads to enhance control and endurance before adding weight.
  • Use full range of motion: Train through pain-free ranges for enhanced function and recovery.


Final Thoughts

TRX suspension training leverages bodyweight in creative ways to comprehensively challenge the deep spinal muscles with controlled instability—all perfectly suited for lower back strengthening. While the approach is low-impact, be sure to discuss options with your doctor and progress gradually. Well-dosed TRX can serve as an effective addition to an integrated back pain treatment plan. Start by tuning into your body, and TRX may help tune up your back.


You might also like our TRX exercises for seniors and our TRX exercises that target the legs

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