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Glute Bridge - Low Back Pain

Upon request from a previous post, today we are going to focus on how to do the glute bridge properly for those suffering with low back pain !

The glute bridge is a staple beginner exercise in low back pain rehab but commonly done incorrectly.

Here's how to do it: 1) Start feet aligned with your knees and hips, heel close to your hips. 2) Find a NEUTRAL spine - tilt your pelvis either way until you create only a slight arch in your lower back.

3) Draw in through the lower abdomen to engage your CORE (activates the TA - a very important muscle for stabilising the spine).

4) Push through the heels to lift your hips up off the ground.

5) Gently lower yourself back down one vertebrae at a time - this develops CONTROL of each section of your SPINE. This also enables you to improve the control of the areas of your spine with the most instability.

. 6) Relax. Repeat.


🔸 Start with hands on the ground, progress to hands on your lower ribs with elbows on the ground, then to hands across your shoulders. This further challenges stability each time due to the reduced contact with the ground. The unilateral component also helps develop rotational stability.

🔸 Once you can control a double leg glute bridge with hands across shoulders, progress to putting your calf on top of your opposite knee, then to one leg bent at 90 degrees (completely unilateral).

🔸 With each progression of the glute bridge above, work through the same hand variations before progressing onto the next difficulty. Tips: - During the unilateral based progressions, you may find that one side has reduced motor control versus the other. This is very common in chronic low back pain patients. Focus on keeping the hips level on that side, lowering yourself down as smooth as possible.

- Remember this is a rehab exercise, not specifically a strength exercise, so focus on smoothness and control of the lowering phase (particularly the areas with the least amount of stability) rather than just raising your hips up and down aimlessly.

If you need help, reach out to our caring and friendly Infinite Health Physio Team at our Chatswood or North Sydney Physiotherapy Clinic. You’ll be glad you did.

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