Lower Back Presses
Lie on a mat on the floor flat on your back, arms folded under your head for support. Bend both knees at 45 degrees, placing both feet flat on the floor. Note that there is a natural space of an inch or two between the curve of your lower back and the mat. Close this space by pushing your back into the floor. Tighten your abdominal muscles while doing so. Hold for a five count.
Start in the same position as for the lower back press. Straighten out your arms and reach them forward toward your knees. Lift your shoulders from the floor as you let your body roll up, naturally following your arms. Stop rolling before your lower back leaves the floor. Feel the stretch in your now-rounded spine. Lower to the floor slowly after holding for a three count.
Lie on your back with arms straight at your sides, knees bent with both feet flat on the floor. Put both hands behind one of your knees so you are holding onto the middle of the back of the thigh. Bring that knee into your chest without straightening the leg. Hold for a 10 count. Go back to starting position. Repeat with the other leg. Do five sets with each leg, then a set of five with both legs simultaneously. As you get stronger, perform this exercise with straight legs.
Lie on your back with your arms straight at your sides, palms down. Lift at your hips until your pelvis is 6 to 12 inches off the floor, depending on your comfort level, keeping your spine straight. Squeeze the buttocks as you lift until you feel a stretch in both your hamstrings and your lower back. Hold for a five count. Do a set of 10.
Do exercises that get your blood pumping to help your back heal and decrease stiffness. This can include walking, biking or swimming. Do not run or jog until your back feels better. The pounding against the ground can aggravate the injury.