• jareddupuis

How To Prevent Back Pain




Back pain is one of those things that can impact a large part of your life, especially if you lead a more active lifestyle.


Without a doubt, this common problem is one of the most frustrating problems you may have and I have had many clients enter my gym dealing with it before they started strength training.


Nevertheless, there are things you can do to prevent back pain, most of which are related to certain movement patterns and positions of the body.


In this article, I am going to give you insight on how to prevent and deal with back pain, so without further ado, let’s get to it!


Keep It Straight…


Unless you want to be The Hunchback of Notre Dame, keeping a good body position (especially during weight training) is essential to preventing and dealing with back pains


Why? Well, because the majority of back injuries are due to a poor, unfavorable body position under significant tension.


Lifting heavy things during everyday activities, or simply being in a bad position for a long time, can progressively damage your spine’s vertebrae.


To further help you understand this, consider the following example.


You went to the grocery to get some water and are going to load your trunk with large water tubs.


Instead of bending over and lifting the bottles up with a curved back, you hoist them up with a neutral spine.


How? Well, begin by bending over with a straight back and dipping your hips down, instead of rounding your spinal column.


Then, use your whole body to lift up the tubs and avoid unfavorable positions of the spine.


Think of it as a squat! The beauty of getting into training and performing exercises such as the squat is you are doing work that is directly transferable to real life which is going to keep your back healthy and you pain free.


Tips To Prevent Back Pain


Though back pain can be excruciating, there are things you can do to prevent and/or deal with it, if it is already present.


Check out our tips below!


Walk It Off!


Non-strenuous aerobic exercise, such as walking, has been shown to relieve low back pain.


It's simple, free and easy to incorporate into your daily routine, plus, you can practically do it during any time, in combination with daily chores.


Walk to work instead of taking the bus, go to the store or simply walk your dog!


Walking helps strengthen the muscles that keep the body upright and improves the stability of the spine.


Though it’s the most common human activity, walking is a powerful back pain-relieving exercise!


Stretch


The back was made to move, so restricting movement can make the pain worse!


Try some simple back stretches to relieve back pain and improve movement.


Remember to move slowly, never force your body to stretch painfully, and use a flat, stable surface on which to stretch.


Swim

Swimming can be a great exercise to help relieve back pain because it puts virtually no pressure on your spine and back, as water supports your entire body.


These are the so-called “low-impact” cardio activities, which don’t put stress on your joints and engage the majority of your muscle groups.


However, it is important to sport the correct swimming technique, as certain movements can strain the back and neck and actually make it worse!


Remember, It’s Not Just The Back


In many instances, back pain is simply the result of weakness elsewhere in your body! I have never had anyone enter my studio that did not improve and/or outright eliminate their back pain after getting into a proper resistance training routine with good form! As a matter of fact, your back works with many other muscles to keep your body straight and stable.


That group of muscles is referred to as the “core” and its made up of, but not only:


1. Abdominal muscles

2. Lower back muscles

3. Obliques

4. Pelvic floor muscles

5. Diaphragm


For this reason, developing your core muscles is of prime importance for back health! Here is my top 5 exercises to help you strengthen your core:


1. Hanging leg raises

2. Squats

3. Lower back hyperextensions

4. Plank variations

5. Hip thrusts


Including these 5 exercises and adding some resistance to them, will help you strengthen your core all around and thus, take tension off of your back and make it less likely for injury to occur. Got a question about these? Shoot a message to maplehillhf@gmail.com


Conclusion


Back pain is a common thing for many people, which in most cases is caused by poor body posture during daily or training activities along with poor core strength.


If however you maintain good posture and have good exercise form, but back pain still persists, it is best to consult with your doctor/physical therapist.


Remember that back pain must not be taken as a joke - A single wrong movement can lead to excruciating, continuous pain! This is the exact reason why you should resort to consulting with a medical professional, in case your back pain is significant.


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