Lower Back Pain - Treating The Source Not The Symptoms
Weak abdominals are not the source of lower back pain.
Most of the time the source of lower back pain is not weak abdominal or lower back muscles but a combination of overused muscles in the upper body causing defects in our postural alignment. This can stem from prolonged sitting or dominance through muscles in the arms and shoulders. When these factors set in, our posture begins to shift; our head will start move forward in front of our body, shoulders will start to round, and we develop a more pronounced curve through our upper and lower back. In this posture our body is out of symmetry causing a lot of force to be taken through our sacrum (base of spine). This is why most people who suffer from lower back issues describe the pain across the lower back above the hips or through the sacrum. The postural issues linked with lower back pain can even lead to fatty deposits through the body (stomach and hips) that will be very hard to shift unless the postural issues are dealt with first.
Release, Stretch and Move
I like to follow a simple process when dealing with pain and injuries. Release: using trigger point massage to release overused areas so underused muscles can become more active. Stretch: developing flexibility through the muscles and joints to create more range of movement. Move: creating efficient movement patterns to transfer into everyday life.
Here are some steps to relieve lower back pain:
Massage muscles in the chest, between shoulder blades and mid back. A massage ball is essential for working these locations. Spend about 30 seconds releasing each area. If you find any sensitive points hold it on that point for about a minute for best results.
Spend about 1 minute in each position to help gain more mobility through the spine.
These 2 movements will help engage key muscles and transfer to efficient movement patterns throughout your day.
Hip Lifts - 8 Reps
Knee Marches - 8 Reps
Work on this routine 2 – 3 times a day to relieve back pain and maintain good spine health. If you feel as though you are spending too much time sitting in a regular day you need to make a bigger effort to move around so the body doesn’t get locked up in that seated position. Chiropractors Association of Australia recommends integrating exercise into your day by getting up from your desk every half hour. Release, stretch, then move!