5 Tips to Avoid Lower Back Pain

  1. Keep those Hammies Stretched.  Hamstrings anchor at the base of your pelvis and when tight will cause your pelvis to tilt back.  This will limit the full range of motion that the pelvis has and cause our lower back or lumbar spine to have to make up that difference in motion.  This will ultimately put undue stress on our lower back and will increase the possibility for injury.
  2. Avoid prolonged sitting.   Research is becoming clear that too much sitting is very detrimental to our health.  Not only can too much sitting lead to cardiovascular issues but it is also terrible for our lower back.  When we are sitting as opposed to standing we put twice as much pressure on our discs of our lower back. This pressure over time will lead to more degenerative changes.  Furthermore prolonged sitting will lead to weak abs and glutes and tight hamstrings.
  3. Increase your core strength.  One of the most common ways people injure their backs is when bending over and lifting an object of the ground.  This becomes even more likely if there is a twisting motion involved as well. One way we can protect this from happening is having a strong core muscle group.  A strong core will protect the inner structures of our spine and dissipate the forces placed on it. A weak core will not help protect our spine and injury is much more likely to occur.  See some great core exercises here.
  4. Shed a few of those extra pounds.  Carrying extra weight, particularly on the belly is very poor for our spine.  Not only does all that extra weight add extra pressure on the spine but when our weight is located on our belly it changes the structure of our spine.
  5. Lastly implore proper lifting techniques.  Use your legs as your power not your back! When lifting bring the weight in close to your body before you lift it.  The farther away from your body the center of mass is the more stress is put on our spine. Always avoid twisting while we are in the process of lifting.  If you must twist with the weight first lift the weight and get into an upright position then you may turn your body remembering to keep your navel and your toes pointed in the same direction.

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