Lower Back Pain Fix #: Stop Sprinting
Max, you mentioned that you regularly row and/or sprint for 15 minute intervals.At the moment, I need you to stop!
Sprinting is unquestionably one of the best things an individual can do to improve overall health and performance.Like everything, though, it has a time and a place and in a program geared towards fixing back pain it needs to be put on the back burner.Likewise, the demands of rowing put the lower back under a great deal of stress and can cause some serious pain-related symptoms.While both sprinting and rowing are fantastic ways to improve overall health and performance, for the time being youd likely be better off eliminating from your program. That doesnt mean you can never do them again but wait until your back is strong and healthy enough to sustain such high demands.
Lunges Step Ups And Bulgarian Split Squats
All three of these movements are unilateral leg exercises, and can be done with a wide variety of equipment . These are great ways to increase unilateral leg strength, muscle hypertrophy, and increase joint stability necessary for more complex strength movements. These tend to be performed with less weight than bilateral movements like squats, deadlifting, and Romanian deadlifts however deliver just as much muscular stress.
How To Use Free Weights To Strengthen Your Lower Back
The participants in this study all had back pain for longer than 3 months. They did not include anyone who had active nerve root compression or inflammatory disease.
It is important to note that emphasis was placed on teaching the participants the correct technique to perform these exercises. I would advise that you ask a physiotherapist or experienced trainer to teach you how to do these exercises before you attempt this programme.
I also think that the participants must have had a relatively OK basic level of fitness, since the single leg glute lift is not easy to perform with good form.
The 16 week programme was divided into a 4 week familiarisation phase, followed by a 12 week strength phase.
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Quick Tips When Performing The Ffess
Start small with the step height. I recommend starting somewhere between 2 and 4 inches and allow yourself to really sink into the bottom position, progressing in height once you can control the descent and ascent appropriately.
Knee position matters–kinda! I personally prefer a slightly forward knee position, with my knee over my shoe laces when performing the FFESS, but there are several variations that can work for you. A good general rule of thumb is, the more forward the knee, the more quad focused the movement is. Whereas, when the knee shifts back, centering over the heel, the more glute focused a movement is. Experiment on your own and see what feels best for you to ease your low back pain.
Rear foot placement needs to be far enough away to stretch but close enough to maintain a stable base and allow for a smooth, controlled ascent. Often when I first start teaching this movement, I see people reach as far back as possible and arching their back, when this isnt the intention of the exercise. Focus on keeping your torso upright, and once your rear foot is planted, sink your knee down towards the floor rather than trying to drive the hips forward. This aspect takes practice and will vary for everyone, so dont compare yourself to others. Get some practice and hit it hard. I promise your booty, quads, and low back will thank you.
Dead Bugs Exercise Common Mistakes
The most common mistakes people make when performing dead bugs are arching their lower backs off the floor and craning the neck up too much, both of which can lead to pain. “Make sure you do not let your low back lift off the ground as you move through each rep, and do not try to crane your head and neck up to look forward,” instructs Wilson. “Keep the head, neck, and spine neutral on the ground.”
Another common dead bug error is to move too quickly. The magic of dead bugs is found in the slow and controlled motion that provides time under tension to build up that deep burn and effectively work your deep stabilizers. That’s because when performing exercises that don’t rely on heavy loading , you need to use a slower tempo to reap the benefits, according to a review from Sports Medicine.
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Back Pain Training Keys
If you have persistent lower back pain, you can still exercise. The key thing is managing risk in all your exercise choices. Theres inherent risk in any exercise and really in any movement period but what you must do if you have back pain is avoid exercises with a ton of inherent risk.
In the long term, as you build more and more core strength, your back will grow stronger in more and more positions. But when youre starting out with lower back pain, you need to minimize body positions that place the lower back at risk.
That means thinking carefully about a few ideas.
Qualitative Focus Group Interviews
After 15weeks, semi-structured focus group interviews were conducted with three of the six training groups . The three groups were chosen randomly by drawing lots. Interviews were based on an interview guide to investigate the participants´ experiences with the training program: the instruction provided, the intensity level and any perceived benefits and challenges. The interviews were conducted by the first author, were audio recorded and transcribed verbatim.
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Lower Back Pain And Weight Training: How To Hit The Gym Without Hurting Yourself
Okay, I know you: the gym is where you live between work and your bed. You pride yourself on ripped abs, thrashed glutes, and cut quads. You could strum your serratus, pound nails with your pecs, break bricks with your biceps and as the plated bar bends, some people stop to watch the steam come off your chest.
What happens next is all too common: Theres the lift, the sudden loss of balance, the uh-oh moment before a clunk, snap, pop, and the dropped weight, lightning bolts to the buttocks and thighs, and the mat coming up to meet you. This follows with the writhing spasm, the crawl to the sauna, the stretch, the ice and the Advil. Maybe you borrow someones Vicodin, or maybe you had some left over from the last injury. This lasts a day, a week, sometimes even a month. Maybe its the first time. Or maybe its the third time this year.
So what happened, and how can you avoid it?
Front Foot Elevated Split Squat
Why it Works: Compared to a typical split squat, this variation encourages more hip flexor mobility while still working the glutes and quads, making it one of the best exercises for lower back pain. The key is to make sure the motion is coming from your hip flexors instead of your back extensors, so when you drop that back knee down, youre not leaning back, says Centenari.
How to Do it: Stand in a split stance with your front foot on a step or platform. Lower down, bending both knees until your back knee is just above the ground. Drive through your front foot to return to the starting position.
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When To See A Doctor For Lower Back Pain After Exercise
It’s normal to experience back pain for up to three days after a strenuous workout, says New York surgeon Dr. Kerem Bortecen to Aaptiv. Physical activity, especially strength training, causes micro-tears in the muscles, triggering an inflammatory response, explains the University of New Mexico. When that happens, your immune system produces cells to repair damaged tissues and build new muscle mass.
In some cases, back pain is due to an underlying condition, weak or tight muscles, or overtraining . “Lower back pain can happen when someone tries to ‘max out’ their lifting when their core and lower back are not strong enough for the stress,” said Dr. Ankur Dave, a director of pain management, to Aaptiv. If the pain is accompanied by a tingling sensation in your legs or buttocks, then you might have sciatica . This condition affects the sciatic nerve, causing pain and numbness in the affected leg or buttock. Mayo Clinic recommends seeing a doctor if your symptoms last longer than a week or so.
Other symptoms, such as back pain that affects your range of motion, may warrant a trip to the doctor, too. For example, muscle contractures cause severe pain and stiffness, making it difficult to move the affected area, warns the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Call your doctor if your symptoms get worse or persist despite using self-help measures like heat and ice therapy, painkillers, or regular stretching.
How To Workout With Back Pain
Im going to explain how to work out if you have chronic back pain. If you follow these steps, you should be able to workout safely without a post-workout flare-up. Dont be surprised if you also notice a reduction in your pain level.
Remember that exercise isnt bad. You need to move to keep your body healthy. But understanding how to properly workout is the key to staying pain-free.
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Enhance The Kinetic Chain
A majority of lower back pain is earned over time, and is not just an anomaly as many fool themselves into believing. That means that your mobility and movement patterns have probably been dysfunctional for a long time, and have been getting progressively worse with every single faulty rep. Get your foot off the damn break before you hit the gas!
The jaw dropping bioengineering of the human body provides many answers to why we get injured. This is most apparent in the Joint By Joint Theory, popularized by Grey Cook and Michael Boyle. This theory states that joints alternate between mobility and stability as their primary function. The lumbar spine is no exception. It primarily serves as a set of stability joints, and is surrounded by the thoracic spine and hips, which are primary mobile joints.
To get our bodies back to equilibrium, a strong prehab-rehab emphasis must be placed on stabilization of the lumbar spine, which we will cover later, and mobility work for the thoracic spine and hips.
Putting a focused effort on increasing hip mobility and range of motion can be manipulated by the positioning of the spine in movement. While your primary goal of training is protecting the spine, keeping it in a vertical position decreases the likelihood of buckling and reinjuring yourself.
Move : Double Leg Lift
Leg lift exercise variations target your lower abs, but like hollow holds, they also have huge benefits for your lower back. During the leg lift, the core complex is in charge of stabilizing the rest of your body, especially if you do the exercise without a back support.
Once you master this exercise, you can add weight by securing a light dumbbell between your feet.
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Maxs Lower Back Pain Question
Ive been trying to eradicate some mild but noticeable lower back pain over the past couple months. Nothing in my life health wise has changed. Still do my best to have a moderate to intense workout 3-5 days per week with a decent balance of lower, upper and core work.
Almost always build in a row or run for 15 minute intervals. I stretch hamstrings, hip flexors, quads and groin after I get a sweat going usually a mix of dynamic and static.
From my research, it seems like my lower back pain could be from uneven lower body work OR poor hip mobility. Any thoughts? Totally not expecting a diagnosis, but if you know of best practices or common alleviating exercises/stretches for lower back, Id love to read about em. Max
Thanks for reaching out!
You ask a great question and I hope my answers will help to alleviate your back pain. Its important for me to note, though, that it may be in your best interest to first get the opinion of a local physical therapist. While I can offer suggestions based on the current literature and my practical experiences, Im not a physical therapist nor am I able to provide a diagnosis. That being the case, please use my recommendations with caution and consult a local physical therapist prior to beginning any exercise protocol.
With that disclaimer out of the waylets get to the good stuff, shall we?
Is There Any Way That I Can Prevent Back Pain From Lifting Weights
A full lifting routine works all of the muscle groups as well as affecting your back. Although there is no guarantee that you will not experience back pain as a result of lifting weights, there are a few things that you can do to prepare your entire body for the stress and strain that it is about to experience, thus reducing the likelihood of an injury that will affect your spine. These preventative steps include:
- Warming up properly and stretching before your session.
- Making sure you never use your back to lift the weight and instead use the muscles that you are targeting.
- Switching up which areas of your body you are working on each day so that you do not over-exert the same muscles.
- Use less weight, but do more repetitions.
- Consider wearing a belt to help support your spine and remind you of the correct posture to assume when lifting.
If you experience pain while lifting, stop immediately. Trying to push through the pain could cause injury.
If you regularly lift weights and have been experiencing back pain and would like the advice and support of an experienced and knowledgeable chiropractor, call Valley Spinal Care today at 602-362-7900.
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Considerations For The Goblet Squat:
Start light, so you can feel the controlled descent and push out of the deep squat position, using your movement quality to guide you in your future weight selection. Use your movement to track progress, not the weight. It is so easy to pick a set weight for the goblet squat and then force feed your body to perform subpar and lackluster repetitions. Dont let a heavy weight cause you to bend forward and lose the integral vertical trunk position.
Tempo is your friend. Utilizing different tempos of a movement can provide the perfect stimulus your body needs to help mitigate pain and keep training at a high level. This holds true when performing goblet squats. Two tempo recommendations I use frequently are: 3 second descent, 3 second hold at bottom, 1 sec ascent, 1 sec at the top OR try a 5 sec descent, 1 sec hold at bottom, 1 sec ascent and 1 sec at the top. Both of these tempos will have your legs burning, with a nice pump, but also allow the back and surrounding musculature to work within a manageable load tolerance helping to improve pain symptoms and build strength.
Too Much Anterior Pelvic Tilt
This is a common issue for many individuals, and is something that needs to be fixed even before the movement begins. Excessive lumbar extension can be a chronic issue, which sometimes is caused by poor pelvic control, mainly excessive anterior pelvic tilt.
To fix this, think about pulling the front of your pelvis upwards with your lower abdominals. This can also be helpful when performing on the floor so that the lower back is being pressed to the ground, assuming a more neutral position.
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Strength And Weight Training
Many people assume you should avoid weight and resistance training if you have a bad back. However, evidence suggests otherwise. Multiple studies have found that back pain sufferers who participate in weight training programs see a decrease in pain symptoms compared to those who avoid activity or stick strictly to cardio.
Because the spine is central to the bodys healthy functioning, its critical to strengthen all muscle groups that support the back and core. This includes strengthening the shoulders, chest, legs and glutes. Perform a combination of weight machine and bodyweight exercises that target these key areas.
Some examples of weight training exercises for back pain include:
- Lateral raises, lateral pulldowns and assisted pull-ups
- Chest flyes, bench press and incline press
- Leg press, extensions and curls
Some examples of bodyweight exercises for back pain include:
- Squats of all variations
- Lunges, either forward or backward
- Push-ups or modified push-ups from knees
Whenever youre weight and resistance training with a bad back, be sure to always tighten your abdominals muscles before beginning an exercise to protect your lower back. Over time, the strength you build in these major areas will help alleviate pressure from the spine, preventing long-term injury. Always get approval from a medical professional before proceeding with weight lifting.
Dos And Don’ts For Strength Training With Back Pain
If you’re ready to give weight training a try, keep these tips in mind:
- To reap the most benefit from strength training, aim to do it 2 or 3 times a week for half an hour.
- Focus especially on exercises that can build strength in your core muscles .
- You don’t have to join a gym or buy expensive equipment to do strength training. You can do it at home, and the resistance can come from small hand weights, resistance bands, or even gravity.
- To protect your back, avoid exercises that involve extreme or abrupt moves. Instead, focus on slow, steady resistance training that takes advantage of the eccentric and concentric strengthening.
- If you’re experiencing a sustained increase in your back pain, take some time off or modify from strength training until it subsides.
- Some soreness is okay and to be expected, but sharp pain is not normal. If you feel any sharp, sudden pain while exercising, stop right away.
Warm up for a few minutes before exercising by using heat therapy and doing simple stretches. Ice therapy can be beneficial when used after exercise to decrease inflammation and alleviate pain.
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