If I Had To Pick Just One Exercise for Back Pain Relief…

This movement is crazy hard but insanely effective. Are you up for it?

David Liira, Kin.


Image from Victor Freitas on Pexels

“If you had to pick just one exercise for back pain relief, what would it be?”

This is a question I got asked a few days ago by a client. While I don’t often like to answer questions that try to oversimplify exercise or physical therapy, this one got me thinking.

What would I choose if I just had to narrow it down to one?

While creating ranking exercises and making lists can be a bit reckless, I do believe it has some merit in giving you direction on where to start. If you had a sudden episode of back pain today and wanted quick relief, this would be my exercise prescription for you.

Let’s get right into it.

Quick Back Pain Relief in Just One Exercise

Please note that I’m by no means stating that this particular movement will heal every back problem you’ve ever had. I’m well aware that every case and individual is different and certain exercises don’t work for some injuries. With that being said, please approach this movement with a healthy level of caution and talk to a trusted health provider if you have any injuries or chronic conditions that may put you in danger during physical activity. This exercise is quite advanced so this point is more important than ever.

The whole goal here is to try to squish as many of the evidence-based ‘good habits’ around back rehab/prehab into one movement. These include but are not limited to hip flexor strengthening, self-decompression, low-back endurance training, unilateral movements, core work, coordination training, and more.

With all this being said, you can see how this one movement is quite advanced. So many layers go into it being so effective, so you have to gradually work your way up to it. To help more novice athletes and those still navigating injuries, I’ve broken down three prerequisite exercises that cover certain elements of the final product. I encourage you to try out each one before moving on to the big challenge. If you don’t feel comfortable with the more advanced movement, these 3 exercises can serve as their own mini-program…



David Liira, Kin.

Kinesiologist. Writing on health and the human condition. Clap and I clap back. https://www.davidliirakin.com