Today's national yearly cost to treat back pain is over 20 billion dollars. If you have injured your back once you are more than likely to injure your back again. There is no one cause for back pain. Muscle weakness due to lack of exercise, poor exercise form, sedentary lifestyles, bad lifting mechanics, muscular imbalances and genetics all play a role in the onset of pain.
We have all heard it, "I was just reaching to pickup something off the floor and I felt a sharp shooting pain." This is something that could effect everyone's day to day living. Nothing crazy going on here just a weird back injury right?
A scene common in the gym setting, "I was just doing my warmups and I went to pickup the bar and felt a stretching sensation."
"I was getting out of my bed and I felt stiff as the day went on my pain got worse." Typical day right?
The aforementioned are examples of common complaints sometimes leading to back pain.
Dealing with back pain and prevention of pain
The human body consists of many joints and each of these joints has a unique job to do. Let's call this joint integrity, each joint is responsible for doing a job and often times when one joint has to pick up the load of another joint this creates a flawed movement pattern. Due to this flawed movement pattern we are at risk for injury. If we continue to live life with flawed patterns it is only a matter of time before the chain breaks down. One of the biggest things you can do to aide in healing and prevention of back pain is to create motion through the joints and utilize mindful lifting mechanics. Today's focus is on creating safe and healthy mobility of the spine.
Basic motion and muscle mobility: The how to guide.
I always urge my clients and those who wish to try these techniques to seek professional medical clearance before proceeding. Everyone has unique needs based on their conditions.
The following stretches are to help develop mobility. Often the muscles that surround the back are limited which creates constant tension on the back. It is important to have proper mobility.
These stretches are great for general maintenance and restoration of joint mobility. Stretches can be performed one to two times daily. You should notice over time that the stretches become easier to perform.
Basic: These are great stretches to start with if you have gentle tightness or discomfort in your back. Hold all stretches for 15-20 seconds working up to 30 seconds as tolerable and aiming for 2 sets each.
Moderate: These stretches are a little more challenging. If the above stretches felt good give these a try.
It is not recommended to force stretches through a painful range.
I hope these stretches provide a great starting point for those on their journey to good spine health.
Here’s a great local resource on spinal health
Williamsburg Neck And Back
Keep the vibes positive,
David Piggott (CPT,CES,PES)