An Easy Step-By-Step Approach To Fixing Low Back Pain
Low back pain is the most common condition seen in adults leading to disability and time away from doing the things you love; a staggering 84% of adults in their lifetime will experience it at least once. That’s why it’s so important to understand the causes and seek the right kind of treatment for relief.
Injuries can include overuse degenerative conditions, herniated discs, muscle and ligament strain/sprains, muscle spasms, and osteoporosis can all contribute to low back pain. Thankfully there is an effective way to find lasting relief from this common affliction: conservation care. This type of non-pharmacological and non-surgical technique aims at treating the cause of your condition by addressing muscular imbalances and incorrect joint movement. We will discuss exercises and stretches step-by-step that are designed to improve posture, strength, and coordination.
Conservation care offers those suffering from low back pain a great option for finding relief without surgery or heavy reliance on medications. At Denner Chiropractic & Performance we use a movement-based approach for the acute treatment and rehabilitation of low back injuries. This article will discuss the 3-best movement-based treatment methods you can do from home.
Before we get into it, it’s important to realize that everyone’s back pain is unique, and while these examples will help the majority, they may not work for some. The best treatment is to see a healthcare professional that treats low back pain using an evidence-based approach. For more information, you can check out our conditions tab located on our website or book an appointment by calling our office. Now let’s get started!
#1 McKenzie Extension Press-Up
The McKenzie Method was pioneered in the late 1950s by New Zealand physiotherapist, Robin McKenzie. It uses movement-based exercises as an effective way to diagnose and manage symptoms associated with low back pain.
To start off treatment, one common approach is a 'McKenzie extension press-up'. This exercise aims to restore the lost range of motion in your lower back which often occurs due to an injury from heavy lifting or prolonged sitting. Through this recommended technique you can give yourself relief while restoring mobility within your spine so that it may move freely again (within its normal limits). Your back is happier when it’s able to move in all directions of its normal range of motion.
After an injury the most common loss of movement is lumbar extension this is due to the fact that most injuries occur while in lumbar flexion, (Lifting a heavy item and twisting is the most common mechanism of injury).
#2 Intra-Abdominal Pressure
Learning and sharpening the skills associated with intra-abdominal pressure is a task that every athlete or powerlifter should be making sure to do. Taught by the Prague School of Rehabilitation, this technique allows your body to properly support and balance the core and lower back muscles while performing physical activities.
Intra-abdominal pressure is based on a motor program embedded in us within the first year of life. This mechanism gets disturbed during our life through improper coaching, injury, and posture. Fortunately, you can learn how to feel this pressure with practice and training.
The best way to train this early on is by lying on your back with your legs elevated up resting on a chair or couch. Next, you will hold the sides of your stomach with your hands having your index finger in the front and thumb in the back. Now you will try to push your belly outward into your fingers feeling for expansion 360 degrees around. The most important part to get this done correctly is to let your stomach relax. You shouldn’t be tensing your abdominal muscles.
A good example I like to give all my patients is “Feel like you’re pushing your elastic waistband outward 360 degrees around with your pressure.” This simple exercise trains your muscles to create intra-abdominal pressure for utmost stability during any performance. This pressure is by way of the diaphragm contracting and descending in our abdominal cavity. The descent of our diaphragm pushes our visceral organs and abdominal contents down into our pelvic floor an outward force is created and this is known as intra-abdominal pressure.
#3 Farmer Carriers
This exercise offers a great way to challenge your core stability when training at a higher level. It's important to ensure that you maintain the correct intra-abdominal pressure while performing this exercise in order to truly benefit from it.
A dumbbell or kettlebell weighing between 10 and 20 pounds is the most common weight with which to start this exercise. You can start by gripping the weight on one side only, ensuring that you keep the required intra-abdominal pressure as you walk back and forth 20 feet from your starting point. The idea is to keep your trunk from laterally flexing due to the load of the weight on just one side of your body. By using this challenging but simple exercise, you can take strides in improving your core stability at an advanced level.
Farmer carries are a great exercise for those who want to challenge their core strength without needing much in terms of equipment or space. Even if you practice this basic carry initially, as you become stronger, don't be afraid to increase the amount of weight or challenge your body by carrying heavy items back and forth!
The two most important aspects of this exercise are
1. Focus on the correct amount and activation of intra-abdominal pressure
2. Try to always keep your torso perpendicular to the ground. Meaning you shouldn’t be tilted to one side.
If you are dealing with low back pain, there are some things you can do to help lessen the discomfort. The best approach is a movement-based program that includes both mobility and strength training. When dealing with pain it is important to listen to your body and increase the exercises at your own pace.
If you have tried these techniques and are still struggling, give us a call. We can help get you on a path to lessening your low back pain today. You can check out our conditions tab on our website for more information, or Click Here.
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