Low Back Pain Treatment: I get low back pain while I walk

Aug 16, 2020

Do you get low back pain while you walk? It's an essential everyday task and it could be due to some simple posture faults that can be easily corrected. This isn't a magic pill that will correct your pain overnight, it's a slow and steady process that gets your body working correctly and reduces your lower back pain over time.

Some of the key learning points you'll cover in this blog

  1. What is poor walking posture/technique?
  2. The impact of poor walking on the spine
  3. What is better walking posture/technique?
  4. The impact of better walking on the spine

What is poor walking posture/technique?

During walking the compressive load on the lumbar spine is approximately 2.5 times your bodyweight, along with very modest shear forces. These forces can slowly wear down your body and eventually you'll experience pain. Over time this pain can come on earlier and earlier and you need to reverse this trend.

What is poor walking posture/technique?

  • Slower pace, little to no arm swing and hunched posture

What is the impact of poor walking posture/technique on the spine?

  • Reduced spine motion and produces static loading of tissues

What is better walking posture/technique?

Your body works best when it's used correctly and this reduces the stress on the joints. Walking creates 2.5 times your bodyweight in compressive load on your low back and if you walk slower, with little arm swing and a hunched posture, it concentrates this load onto your low back.

If you use a better posture, you'll still create the 2.5 times bodyweight in compressive load but it get spread around your core and absorbed much better, which can help reduce your pain.

What is better walking posture/technique?

  • Faster pace, arm swing and upright posture

What is the impact of better walking posture/technique on the spine?

  • Reciprocal muscle activity, tissue load sharing, gentle motion, reduced spine loads and energy conservation.

What’s the next step?

We've looked at your walking posture and how that can help reduce your low back pain. Next it's essential to do the right amount and this is where the first question comes in;

  • How long does it take for your low back pain to begin?

If it takes 1-minute for your back pain to begin it's key to rest or take a break before it does. If you can walk for 50-seconds and take a break for 30-seconds and then walk again for 50-seconds with no pain you've gone some way to reducing your lower back pain. As you continue to repeat this cycle and stay pain-free you can then begin to increase the time you from 50-seconds to 1-minute 15-seconds (as an example).

This treatment isn't the typical recommendation of strengthening your core, it's much more functional and valuable. Plus strengthening your core isn't always the answer to your low back problem. This kind of treatment takes time and might be one piece of a bigger puzzle but it has helped online clients in the past.

If you would like to find out how I helped an online client overcome his low back pain using a walking strategy like this you can learn it by attending my How to Overcome Low Back Pain Webinar, just click here to enrol

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