Anyone who has ever suffered a back pain knows that it is an insidious feeling that can stay throughout the day, preventing a nice rest at night. It can reach different degrees of disability, not allowing the execution of certain movements or hindering them, making almost impossible to develop our work or slowing down the actions of our daily life. Whether you have endured one before or you have the good fortune not to have suffered it (very odd), I’ll try to give you some advice about how to prevent the back pain.
Our first focus of attention must be in our posture. We have already described in previous posts that the axis of the back should be straight from a frontal vision. Whichever it may be our static posture (standing, sitting or lying down) we ought to respect such premise, emphasizing that the whole surface of the back must be reclined on the contact area, specially the lumbar zone, in case we have our back leant on a seat’s back or we are on decubitus.
Back’s straight and upright posture does not lose its importance although we are moving. The walk must be natural y not forced, keeping the look forward with both eyes in the same horizontal line, relaxed shoulders a bit backwards, to allow the chest’s diameter expansion, and droopy so the neck muscles are not tense. If we get to relax the cervical zone, the lumbar region will be able to do its job of support and force transmitter towards the lower limbs without overloading it.
We can also add that the back must stay perpendicular to the floor no matter we change the height of our vision, e.g. when we bow to pick up something. This simple movement should be made bending the knees, not bending the waist because, even if we pick up an insignificant piece of paper, the back erector muscles must do a great effort to recover verticality as they have to move the lever formed by the length of our back from the waist to the business end of the head.
Therefore, in view of the above explanation we can infer that the best physical condition the back muscles have, and even the abdominal muscles as they serve as supporting points for their efforts, the less likely they’ll experience discomfort at the time they are required for any effort.
In any case, if the effort must be done and it may be an activity that requires a sustained period of time, either our job or an extraordinary activity, we should consider the use of orthotics or the use of an external aid such as a lumbar girdle in order to discharge the muscles of this region and permit a good performance with a minor effort.
A physiotherapist’s guidance and advice before any injury happens can avoid many and big pains that may mean the loss of working days spent in bed and, once the pain is gone, there may be effects that influence us into new injuries in the same region or compensations in other areas. To turn to physiotherapy in a preventive way means savings in physical and monetary costs.