5 exercises people with degenerative disc disease should avoid

People with degenerative disc disease (DDD) should do low-impact exercises that help strengthen the muscles around the spine without pain

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High-impact exercises

Activities like running or jumping can worsen the symptoms of DDD

Alternative: Walking 

Walking is an excellent low-impact activity that boosts cardiovascular health without straining the spine

Lifting heavy weights can compress the spine and worsen the condition. Avoid exercises like deadlifts and overhead presses

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Heavy lifting

Exercises  like free squats, lunges and modified push-ups build strength without compromising the spine

Alternative: Bodyweight exercises

These load the lumbar spine, leading to discomfort and injuries over time

Sit-ups and crunches

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Planks are effective in strengthening the core and reducing lower back pain

Alternative: Planks

Sports like basketball and football demand repetitive or sudden lateral and transverse movements that strain the spine

High-impact sports

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Swimming is a low-impact, full-body exercise that comes with cardiovascular benefits. Start with small laps and stop if you experience pain 

Alternative: Swimming

These exercises can strain the lower back and aggravate the symptoms of DDD

Toe-touching stretches

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This can help release tension in the lower back without straining the spine

Alternative: Knee-to-chest stretch

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