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How to Prevent Lower Back Pain When Running

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prevent lower back pain when running

When it comes to runners, lower back pain may impact their performances and long-term health. Therefore, it’s important to know how to prevent lower back pain when running.

Lower back pain was the most prevalent type of pain documented in a study, with 25% of U.S. adults experiencing it.

In this article, we’ll discuss how to prevent lower back pain when running as well as the causes.

How to Prevent Lower Back Pain When Running

Before starting a run, it’s critical to warm up. Warm-up exercises strengthen joint mobility while also activating muscles. As a result, you’ll be less likely to get hurt and will be able to run with a good posture.

Here’s how to prevent lower back pain when running:

  • Stretch your hamstrings twice daily
  • While doing toning and strength workouts, focus on the back’s core muscles
  • Avoid running on cement as it has a hard surface. Instead, try running on a rubber track. The track’s shock absorption and padding will protect the runner
  • Make a cross-training plan. Cross-training will increase your fitness level while also lowering the chance of injury
  • Purchase shoes that are suitable for your feet

What Causes My Lower Back to Hurt When I Run?

Many reasons can cause back pain during a run. While most problems are easy to treat, some will need medical treatment. So, if the discomfort is extreme, get medical attention as soon as possible.

Back discomfort can be a result of:

1.   Hyperlordosis

Hyperlordosis is a severe bending of the lower spine. The condition causes your bottom to push out, and your stomach will tilt forward. Running might induce lower back pain as a result of this poor posture.

In most cases, hyperlordosis doesn’t necessitate medical intervention. You can often treat it by stretching and exercising to improve your form.

2.   Muscle Strains and Sprains

Excessive exercise might cause your lower back muscles to stretch and tear. As a result, pain, stiffness, and muscular cramps might occur.

If you’ve had this happen to you, you should relax and apply ice to the affected area. Make an appointment with your doctor if the pain or soreness worsens.

3.   Degenerative and Herniated Disc

Spinal disks are rubbery pads in your spine that function as shock absorbers and mobility aid. Degenerative disk disease is when damaged spinal discs cause pain. As a result, your spine becomes weak, which will make it difficult for you to run.

A herniated disc is similar in a way. It happens when the internal part of the plate between your spine pushes through the external ring. As a result, you’ll feel pain and struggle to move.

4.   Other Factors

Trail running couple

Other factors, including physical features and training mistakes, play a part. Some of the physical factors include height and weight.

Physical Factors

Fat mass can have harmful effects on the body when sprinting. The more weight you have, the tougher it will be for your body to run the full distance. As a result, you’ll put up a significant amount of energy. If you’re just getting back into running after weight gain, read this article.

In terms of height, taller people have a longer stride, which requires more energy and weight to move.

Training Mistakes

Training mistakes may also cause lower back pain. Over-exercising and over-striding put a lot of tension on your back. This is also common in people who use a weight vest to build muscle when running but go way too heavy.

Especially if you are new to running, or just getting back into running after a break, take it easy until you get yourself acclimated.

Another mistake is dragging your feet while running. If you drag your feet, you’ll most likely land ahead of your body rather than beneath it. This may cause you to lose your form, resulting in a lot of back discomfort.

Furthermore, wearing the wrong shoes can harm your health. Adidas Men’s Lite Racer Adapt 3.0 is a shoe that will provide you with comfort and swiftness.

How Can You Build Back Strength for Running?

Build Back Strength for Running

To avoid injuries, it’s critical to keep the muscles along your spine strong. Running primarily works all the muscles in the lower body. Additionally, it exercises the core and abs, which are core muscles.

It’s important to plan a workout that targets these muscles to prepare your body for running. Here are some strength-building workouts you can do:

  • Regular and jump squats
  • Forward lunges with rotations
  • Single-leg Romanian deadlifts
  • Weighted superman
  • Speed skaters
  • Regular and side planks

How to Relieve Lower Back Pain After Running?

If you feel like your back is killing you, don’t worry. There are many ways in which you can relieve that pain easily.

1.   Heating Pads

Wear some hot pads if you’re having lower back pain. The pads will improve circulation. Additionally, it will strengthen the flexibility of your muscles and joint tissues.

The heating pad is an excellent pad for relieving back discomfort.

If you don’t have a heating pad, you can use a hot damp towel. Apply the heated pads for 15-20 minutes.

2.   Tennis Ball Massage

You can use tennis balls for self-massage. Tennis balls can relieve lower back discomfort in the same way that rollers do.

To begin, lie down on the floor on your back with a tennis ball beneath your back in the painful spots. Before switching to the next area, lie with the ball pushing in for around 30 seconds.

3.   Back Pain Yoga

There are yoga exercises that are specifically for back pain. Since it exercises all muscles around the spine, it can quickly ease lower back discomfort.

However, you should consult a professional yoga instructor. The instructor can tell you which postures to perform based on your condition.

Tip: Many poses might help ease tension. Some of these poses include: cat-cow, extended triangle, and sphinx rose.


Now that you know how to prevent lower back pain when running, you won’t have to worry. Always stretch before running and wear comfortable shoes.

Running with the proper posture can make a big difference. If you plan a workout, include all the muscles to gain strength and improve posture. Exercises such as squats and planks are ideal.

If you experience pain after running, you can use a heating pad to relieve the discomfort. However, if you wish to do some self-massage, you can use a tennis ball as a roller.

Now, you can run and win the race without feeling any pain.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the questions we get all the time about lower back pain when running, and our best answers to them.

Should I Run with Lower Back Pain?

If you have back pain, running with a proper form can help. However, If the condition worsens, you should quit running and seek medical attention.

How Often Should I Run Without Straining My Lower Back?

You should only run for 20 to 30 minutes a day. It’s best to run three to four times per week. If you want to boost your running workout, you should do it gradually. Slowly increase either the distance or the speed simultaneously.

What Is a Good Running Technique?

To run correctly, keep your shoulders over your hips and your arms loose. You should avoid glancing down and keep your head straight forward.

Also, take small steps and don’t overstride. While sprinting, make sure to take deep breaths. Inhale and exhale through both your nose and mouth.

Does a Body Support Belt Help With Lower Back Pain While Running?

Your form can improve with the use of a body belt. During your run, a belt can correct and support your spine while also helping your core muscles. As a result, you won’t strain your back. Sparthos’ Back Support Belt is ideal for a variety of back conditions.

Understanding the causes of back pain, as well as what can be done when you start to have some of the symptoms, will put you on a good path understanding how to prevent lower back pain when running in the future.

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About the author

Jasper loves to write about fitness, running, and anything else that gets him moving outdoors. He's an avid hiker, backpacker, and climber who loves to stay fit so he can make sure he's healthy enough to enjoy his favorite hobbies. He also spends time writing about his true passions in life.