5 everyday causes of low back pain

Mar 19, 2020

Low back pain doesn’t have to be triggered by an event or accident. More often than not it is the result of a build-up or aggregation of actions over a period of time.

 The problem is these damaging actions can be pretty mundane things. Normal things you don’t realise are doing you damage. That’s why in this tutorial I want to address some of the everyday causes of low back pain. Because awareness of what you might be doing wrong can actually be half the battle.


 Repeated bending of the spine

 You drop something and quickly bend down to pick it up. You bend down to talk to or play with young children. You wash up each evening in a sink that’s slightly too low for you.

 All of these are actions that might happen every day, but that you perform without really thinking, and often in a rush, giving your body little or no time to prepare for the movement.

 Add to this sit ups and crunches that are more deliberate actions but when done wrong can really put strain on the spine and cause low back pain.


Repeated twisting of the spine

 Similarly, there are twisting movements that happen as part of everyday life that can cause stress on the spine if you do them without thinking and without preparation. Think getting in and out of a car in a tight parking spot. Unloading the dishwasher. Over-reaching for things.

 Any movement or exercise that causes your spine to twist repeatedly has the opportunity to cause lower back pain.


Prolonged sitting in a poor posture

 There’s no getting away from the fact that generally we are leading more sedentary lives these days. Whether you’re sitting in an office for eight hours a day or simply spending your evenings on the sofa in front of Netflix, getting your posture right is vital to protecting your lower back, as is taking a wander around every so often.


Poor everyday movement

As you go about your day to day, even simple actions like going up and down stairs and cleaning can, over time, cause lower back pain if you don’t take notice of the way your body is moving.

 Lifting and twisting from the hips or lifting with just the arms and not using the muscles of the torso to support the spine, can all contribute to back pain in the longer term.


Excessive compression of the spine

 Perhaps not such an everyday occurrence, but excessive compression will have a very real and potentially immediate impact on your lower back.

 If you slip and fall, landing on your hips or coccyx at the base of your spine, you will send an excessive amount of force up through your spine causing damage that may affect you in the short or long term.


The importance of reducing poor movement habits

 The five causes listed above will, over a period of time, turn into those phrases you hear from fitness professionals – you’ve got tight muscles, your muscles are spasming, you’ve got a herniated disc, etc. All of which will eventually lead to lower back pain.

 But those conditions didn’t happen by accident, they happened for a reason - usually one related to poor movement habits. Become aware of these habits, begin to reduce instances of poor movement and you’ll start to be more aware of your actions and how to make corrections.


So what’s next?

This tutorial focuses mainly on the everyday movements that might have a damaging effect on your lower back or spinal health rather than what you can do to improve things. This awareness, though, is an important first step in the journey to living pain free.

In my eBook, How to Overcome Low-Back Pain you’ll find more detailed information about the impact of everyday movements on your body, but then we’ll take it further with guidance on how you can make longer term changes and improve habits. Rehabilitating this kind of bad back is not just a case of doing a few stretches and it’s fixed, it’s about improving the way you approach all aspects of movement whether you’re choosing to exercise or simply going about your day to day.

And the eBook is a practical guide that takes you through it step by step.

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