Nearly 80% of adults will experience some sort of back pain in their lifetime. Back pain is a phenomenon and is therefore not clearly understood because any number of underlying factors may be involved (i.e., unhealthy spinal posture, lifting too much weight, lifting while twisting, sedentary lifestyle, being overweight, etc.). Here's the vicious cycle: poor posture may contribute to back pain which in turn may worsen poor posture. Once your back starts hurting, the vicious cycle begins with the end result being worse posture than before back pain. By the way, the invention of the computer certainly has not helped in terms of improving human posture.
Poor posture is exhibited by misalignment of the cervical, thoracic and/or lumbar curvatures of the spine (i.e., rounded shoulders, protruding buttocks and abdomen, excessive arch of the lower back). This imbalance of spinal alignment may cause associated ligament and muscle strain as well as compressed nerves. Poor posture over the long-term may increase wear on joint surfaces, contributing to the development of osteoarthritis. Thus, to reduce back pain it makes sense to readjust the spinal curvatures into balanced alignment so as to lessen muscular strain and nerve compression.
"I shouldn't do any physical activity if my back hurts"
The above statement is a myth because physical activity can reduce back pain by increasing muscular strength and spinal flexibility. In fact, it may be due to muscular weakness that is a root cause of back pain. If necessary, follow your doctor's recommendation to get one or two days of bed rest only if the pain is debilitating. In general, acute and chronic pain require up to 2 days and 2 weeks of rest, respectively. Be sure to get up and about soon afterward since lying in bed for an extended period of time may actually exacerbate back pain due to increased stiffness. Remember, staying in bed and relaxing is NOT the best cure or treatment for back pain--the sooner you get moving, the better.
SOME BACK PAIN PREVENTION TIPS:
Bottom line: You should make every effort to keep your spine limber and your muscles strong and flexible in order to reduce spinal curvature misalignment and the resulting back pain. Don't let back pain be a deterrent to exercise! Continue exercising but at a reduced intensity level and be sure to stretch regularly.
Brian Danley, CFT
"Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going."
Brian Danley, CFT "Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going." 408-688-1586 (cell) briandanleyfitness.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/briandanleyfitness https://www.facebook.com/BrianDanleyFitness
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I'm a personal trainer who loves to help others fulfill their health and fitness goals. I consider myself a bodybuilder in that I live the lifestyle of eating healthy food, working out regularly, and sculpting my body.