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What are good abdominal exercises for someone who has a bad back and shouldn't do sit-ups?

Halle Clarke, New York, NY
“A lot of conditions fall under the category of a "bad back" There is scoliosis, lordosis, stenosis, SI dysfunction, general weakness and other disc pathologies, to name a few. How one should strengthen the core varies on the medical reason for the bad back. Because you have been toldnot to do...” Read more
Franklin Antoian, Delray Beach, FL
“Good abdominal exercises for someone who has a bad back and should not do sit-ups include bridges, planks and half-crunches. In a half-crunch, just bring your shoulders off the floor and go back to starting position. ” Read more
James Weaver, Milford, CT
“The only time that I did sit-ups is when I was in the military. I don't recommend doing sit-ups, ever. The best exercises are crunches. When you do a crunch properly, there is no strain on your back. In order to do a crunch properly, you must have your back flat on the floor or on a mat. Place...” Read more
Charles Bell, Knoxville, TN
“Use a stability ball. This can take pressure off the problem area. Some other exercises that can be done by people with back issues include modified planks, which put pressure on the legs.” Read more
Bill Ross, Littleton, CO
“Your best exercise is going to be a plank on your knees. Then advance to a plank on your toes. You must make sure your core is fully engaged every time. Keep your back as flat as possible during the entire time. Your goal should be to hold the plank position for 60 seconds. There are many...” Read more
Andrea Metcalf, Chicago, IL
“A bad back is usually an indicator or a weak back side, including hamstrings and glutes. It is best to work on stretching the hip flexors and strengthening the glutes and hamstrings with bridging exercises. Check out free videos on my website for back pain exercises. www.andreametcalf.com” Read more
Jaime Marizan, New York, NY
“Lie face-up with both legs bent on the floor. Do a pelvis tilt up and down for two sets of 15 reps. Then move on to doing a pelvic bridge. Slowly raise both hips, creating an arch on the lower back.” Read more
Dan Kritsonis, Bellevue, WA
“Keep in mind that even the safest abdominal exercises can cause back pain if performed with poor form. Fortunately, there are numerous abdominal exercises, which, if performed correctly, will not hurt your back. To protect the back, your core muscles must be actively engaged. It helps if you...” Read more

I want to get better sleep.

Insomnia can be characterized by trouble getting to sleep, waking up too early, waking up in the middle of the night and not being able to get back to sleep, and being tired when you walk up. Generally, if you take more than 30 minutes to get to sleep, or to get back to sleep, you are experiencing insomnia.

Insomnia can be further categorized as either primary or secondary and acute or chronic. Primary insomnia means the cause of the condition is unknown. Secondary insomnia is caused by a physical condition, jet lag, age, caffeinated or alcoholic drinks, or by taking certain medications. Older people are more likely to experience insomnia, and women are more likely to be insomniacs than men.

Even if you seem to sleep for a normal length of time, you may still be tired because your sleep is of poor quality. The average sleep cycle is 90 minutes long, and includes four stages of sleep (one being the shallowest and four being the deepest) as well REM sleep. REM stands for…

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Omega-3

Omega-3 fatty acids are the superstars of healthy fatty acids, improving the health of the heart, brain, skin and other internal organs and enhancing quality of life in myriad ways.

A fundamental building block for the body, this essential nutrient is part of the cell membrane and plays a role in the function of cell receptors. Omega-3 fatty acids work wonders for healthy bodies, making brains smarter and hearts stronger. For bodies fighting illness, this fatty acid is one of the most powerful nutrients, able to battle conditions ranging from rheumatoid arthritis to attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) to cancer to depression.

There are two main types of omega-3 fatty acids, which are also called polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Scientists have not determined whether one type is healthier than the other. At any rate, most Americans lack both types.

Among the many health benefits of omega-3 fats, evidence is strongest for heart health. Omega-3's lower blood…

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Kettlebell exercise

The kettlebell is a specially designed weight used for cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility training. An effective and (somewhat) portable tool, the kettlebell can be used at home, with a personal trainer, or in group exercise classes.

The secret behind this cast-iron instrument, which looks like a bowling ball with a handle on top, is that the weight is centered below the handle, requiring good balance and core control.

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