Just about everybody has suffered from back pain at one time or another – and those who haven´t yet, the emphasis is on the “yet”.
Back pain is perhaps one of the most common ailments around, especially for people who exercise little and tend to live a sedentary life.
When speaking of back pain there can be a number of causes that go from specific movements that have strained the muscles, to a bad posture, slipped disc, spasms, injury to the ligaments, sciatica and even as a result of being overweight.
Lower back pain, also known lumbago, can refer to mild or even severe low back pain. The pain can be acute or chronic and affects young and old people. It is focused in the lower back, the lumbar area. One of the extraordinary things is that people have different pain levels for what appears to be the same cause. An identically strained muscle will cause different levels of pain between two people.
The causes can be many and this is one of the most important aspects that has to be defined. Back pain is a symptom of something and the cause has to be identified so as to apply the correct procedure. Some of the factors causing the lumbago pain can be an old injury that did not heal at all, falls, carrying too much weight or natural causes due to aging of the body.
Who is prone to low back pain?
- People between 30, 40 and upwards.
- Those whose physical condition is not in top condition.
- People who lead sedentary lives.
- People who eat foods high in fat.
- Those with arthritis or kidney stones.
- Pregnant women.
- People whose jobs require great physical effort.
There are alternative treatments to relieve low back pain
There are several alternatives to address this ailment and these go from surgical procedures to exercise-based therapies. The latter are the most common as they provide very good results and most cases do not require surgical procedures. Another important aspect of exercise therapies is that they are also preventive measures and have a direct relationship to overall health.
Types of exercises to eliminate low back pain
Stretching: Perhaps my favorite. The idea is to make smooth movements that stretch the muscles, ligaments and tendons, in what is known as elongation. By moving the spine and surrounding tissue, it helps eliminate the pain. Stretching has many benefits, for all ages, as it helps reduce tension in the muscles, increase flexibility and therefore the range of movements (try touching your toes). Blood circulation also benefits and so do you as this increases your energy levels.
Strengthening exercises: There are two types. The first is the McKenzie exercise, which involves extension movements that reduce pressure on the muscles of the spine and thereby reduce pain.
Dynamic lumbar stabilization exercises, are performed by a therapist and help patients improve their posture to avoid pain.
Low-intensity aerobic exercise: These should be milder than normal, and what they do is to improve resistance back, but must be practiced constantly to that work. For example, you can:
- Take a walk.
- Use a stationary bike.
- Perform exercises in the water.
In short, to relieve and prevent back pain, the best thing you can do is to exercise, not necessarily going to extremes, but in such a way that your overall fitness is improved and your back and abdominal muscles are stronger and more flexible.