If you are overweight you can bet that is a contributing factor. People that are overweight are more prone to bad posture because of the areas where the additional weight collects. Indeed I understand how difficult it is to maintain weight in todays world. Fast food coupled with a nutritional pyramid that focuses on carbohydrates and sedentary lifestyles literally make you fat. I won’t go too far into your weight because I know everyone tells you that. Given these points, just do what you can to reduce your weight and you will moving in the right direction to stop low back pain.
You may think that this is an absolutely stupid suggestion to eliminate low back pain but it is actually a huge contributing factor. Surprisingly the discs in between your vertebrae are 70-80% water. If you don’t drink enough water the discs become dry and less flexible.
Over the years I have had many clients tell me that they stay hydrated by drinking “fluids”. Let’s look at the top two “fluids” Americans drink.
Coffee is not an acceptable means of hydration. Actually, coffee is what is called a “Diuretic”. A Diuretic in explained simply is something that offsets the hydration balance in your body. The reaction is such as your body is incapable of maintaining proper hydration thus is retains water abnormally. Abnormal water retention as mentioned means that your body refuses to distribute water correctly. Think of it as your body refusing water during a drought.
Soda pop is truly horrible for you on so many levels. I’d like to share a secret with you that I learned from a Soda Pop manufacture. Every 6 months the aluminum lines that carry the soda have to be replaced. Not for sanitary reasons either. The soda lines must be replaced because the soda that flows trough the lines corrodes them so badly that aluminum flakes will begin to contaminate the soda.
Think about that. Soda eats aluminum. And it doesn’t matter if it is clear or brown. Orange or green. All soda eats away at the lines.
In terms of low back pain and hydration, the spikes in sugar create similar effects to coffee. Causing your body to “freak out” and not distribute water properly.
The truth is there is no substitute for water. Not tea, Not sparkling water, Not flavored water. Think of it like this. As soon as you put anything, and I mean anything, into your water it is no longer water. This includes the new fad of water flavorings you’ll see. All of them have adverse effects when it comes to the body. So just drink water.
Sitting on one leg is another very common cause of low back pain. Especially in women. Folding a leg between your thigh and the chair seat also causes the same pelvic deviation as mentioned above. At first you may think sitting this way is more comfortable for you. However with the increased number of hours people are sitting at the computer the deviation created is very dangerous. Even if you switch between the left and the right leg.
The compression you are putting on your discs is multiplied far beyond normal. Then you “Switch” and amplify the compression to the opposite side. When you sit at the computer be sure to keep your feet flat on the floor. Better yet take a look at a footrest. There are multiple designs to choose from. I would recommend one that moves easily so you will be inclined too more your legs throughout your workday.
Sitting on a wallet is a sure fire way to exacerbate low pack pain. Moreover is the wallet is jam packed with 3 inches of useless paper. There is absolutely no good reason to have a wallet that is inches thick. With mobile devices being what they are today anything you have stored in your wallet can be entered into your mobile device.
A thick wallet causes low back pain because the wallet pushes up on your hips unevenly. An uneven pelvis is called a Pelvic Deviation. Pelvic Deviation causes the lower lumbar vertebrae to be off center either left or right. The deviation causes low back pain because it will cause the soft fluid discs to become impinged. The impingement is what causes the pain because the nerves from your spinal cord exit between the vertebrae and the disc. Nerve impingement = pain. It’s just that simple.
Assessing Low Back Pain
Above all to stop low back pain you must begin assessing low back pain. It should be noted that assessment is much easier than you think. In this article I will outline way to help you assess the cause of your low back pain. By incorporating the suggestions here you will begin to gain a clearer understanding of the root cause of your low back pain.
Stop Saying My Back Hurts
The statement “Stop Saying my Back Hurts” may seem ridiculous however it is part of assessing low back pain. Albeit true, try being more specific with yourself. Replace the above statement with What Am I doing right now? Then assess your current activity. Are you sitting on one leg? Do you still have that bulky wallet? Are you sitting in a poor quality seat? Once you have an answer to the above questions there is yet another question.
What Can I Do To Correct It?
Take action immediately by asking yourself “What can I do to correct it?”. Then do it. For example, throw that wallet away and get a front pocket wallet. If you’re sitting in a poor quality, unsupportive seat, stand up or move to a different seat. While the pain may not immediately subside, identifying the contributing action and correcting it will put you on the correct path. Moreover try not to get angry when you feel your low back pain.
Anger Increases Your Low Back Pain
A common reaction to low back pain is anger. Unfortunately, pain does not correct itself because you are angry. Quite the opposite actually. When you are angry your muscles will naturally begin to tense up. Thus, anger increases your low back pain. Additionally, muscle has memory. So if you are angry at the low back pain you feel you are actually training your muscle to increase tension when you are angry.
How counterproductive is that!
Here is an example to help you get a clear picture. Think back to a repetitive motion job you did. It could be stuffing envelopes to filling jars. Any repetitive job in your past. Do you remember how the first couple times you fumbled around a bit? Then after 15- 20 minutes you seemed to be able to do the job without thinking? That experience was muscle memory at work. In that situation you literally programmed your muscles to know the exact distance to reach to grab the paper and stuff the envelope. Similarly, your back muscles can have this reaction.
My Process Of Assessing Low Back Pain (This really happened!)
Here is an example of my process for assessing low back pain when it creeps up on me. I’m on vacation in Thailand. We had just walked the better part of the afternoon around Chatuchak Market in Bangkok. The place is massive. Not only did we walk all afternoon but we took public transportation back to the hotel. That means more standing because the train was packed. Then my back pain started. Dull at first but began increasing pretty quick.
I paused and began to “feel” around for a cause. I know we had walked far but I had on Keen sandals which normally give me great support. Plus me feet didn’t hurt, neither did my knees. So I moved on to my hips. Ah ha! I could feel my hips were super tense. Being on the train I was able to hold onto a grab bar and stretch out my hips pretty nicely. I held the stretch on each side for a good 30 plus seconds and did that three times per side. I looked a little funny but whatever.
Again, the pain didn’t go away instantly but I was able to feel it subside rather quickly. When we stepped off the train I was able to walk easier. Also, while standing waiting for cross walks I stretched my hips again, however not as intense. By the time we hit the restaurant I was feeling much better. This is the power of assessing low back pain, without anger, at work.
Applying This Example To Your Self Assessment
In your case you may not stop at your hips. The cause of your pain may be a little higher. Regardless the assessment process is the same. “Feel” each part of your body and analyze what you are doing that is causing the pain. Refrain from anger if at all possible. Then incorporate a stretch to help alleviate the pain. The stretch can be something as simple as a Pelvic Tilt or standing up and taking a short walk using long strides. Whatever the fix is for you the goal is to identify it and take immediate corrective action.
The positive rest position is a common recommendation among Chiropractors and Physical Therapists. Chances are if you have seen one of these practitioners they have shown you this position. The idea behind The Positive Rest position is similar to that of the Lateral Stretched Leg. Similarly they both work on Positional Release.
How The The Positive Rest Position Works
During this relaxation technique you are positioning your body in what is also known as a “Zero Gravity Position”. This position places your legs higher than your torso which reduces pressure on your low back. While reducing the pressure on your low back you are allowing the muscles to relax and self heal. As with the stretched leg exercise you can maintain this position for as long as is comfortable.
Getting Into Position
In short, your torso will be on the floor and your lower legs will be elevated above you on a couch or chair. If your floor is hard you can place a pillow or two lengthwise under your torso. Similarly if the seat of your couch or chair is too high you would use the pillow to bring your legs to a 90 degree angle. You can lay in this position for as long as you like.
Add A Pelvic Tilt
For added benefit you can preform pelvic tilts. These motions are easy. Just rotate the top of your pelvis in the direction of your head. Hold the rotation for 1-2 seconds and release. First The key with pelvic tilt is to not tense too much. Second is to use your stomach muscles to initiate the motion. Using your stomach muscles will allow your back muscles to “Turn Off” thus increasing the Positive Rest Position benefits. As mentioned above, you can do this to your comfort level.
Most importantly, if you feel discomfort, stop. That should go without saying.
An important note is to get up from this position slowly. Trying to get up too quickly can cause you to tighten your low back. Rather exit the position slowly. You may want to twist your torso or push away using the floor.
In conclusion The Positive Rest Position is a passive exercise designed to reduce low back pain. Likewise this position can be achieved by using a Zero Gravity Recliner.
What Is A Zero Gravity Recliner?
As I have said a Zero Gravity Recliner is simply a chair that puts you in The Positive Rest Position. While there are many versions of Zero Gravity Recliners on the market, the quality is not equal. I recommend you use Relax The Back to make your purchase. The reason is Relax The Back will handle any warranty issues you have in the future. For example, the chair breaks. No problem. Call Relax The Back and they send out a tech to fix the chair. You don’t have to deal with the manufacture. Moreover you don’t have to ship the chair.
When shopping from Zero Gravity Recliner chairs there there are two different feelings you will get. One style your will feel you are sitting ON the chair. Compared to the other feeling of sitting IN the chair. Here is an example.
This style you feel “ON” the chair
This style you feel “IN” the chair
At this point I will open up for questions about the Positive Rest Position or Zero Gravity Recliner. Leave a comment or Contact Me.
Lateral leg rotation is point often overlooked. Standing still, look down at your feet. Do they point straight ahead or out to the side? In truth chances are if you are trying to stop low back pain your feet will point outward. Similar to a dancer in first position. When your feet point outward or have a lateral rotation your pelvis naturally will fall forward causing low back pain. This is called Anterior Pelvic Tilt. Similar to a Pelvic Deviation except
Anterior Pelvic Tilt is when your pelvis tilts forward rather than to the left or right.
Although it may be tough to understand the relationship between walking and low back pain undoubtedly there is. Correspondingly the products below will assist you in correcting lateral rotation. Basically you are going need floor guides to help you along. Provided that you practice the exercises diligently you will see results.
It is a must that you correct lateral rotation if you want to stop low back pain. I have heard over and over “that’s just how I stand and walk”. This is false. You learned bad posture and if your mindset is “this is how it is” then chances are you will never stop low back pain. Now.
~Standing And Correcting
Standing still rotate your feet inward so they point straight in front of you. Stand in this position for 5-10 minutes. Do not allow your feet to rotate outward. Instead focus on your pelvis, attempting to tilt or rotate your pelvis backward. Relax into this position. You may feel funny at first but keep doing it. You are correcting years of bad posture that contributed to your low back pain. If your goal is to stop low back pain you must correct your posture. Practice this a minimum of 5-6 times per day if you sit for the majority of the day. If you work a job where you stand, you should focus on Standing and Correcting all the time. Feet Forward needs to become a new habit.
~Walking And Correcting
Once you have a feeling for Standing and Correcting it is time to start Walking and Correcting. At this point I strongly recommend you invest in orthotics. There are low cost orthotics available that will help correct your posture from the ground up.
From the Standing and Correcting position, feet pointed straight forward, take one step forward. Now that you have taken one step look down at your feet and make sure they are still pointing forward. Correct them to point straight if needed then take another step. Look down again and correct your feet if needed. Take another step. Correct. Take another step … and so on.
As you take each step focus on the way it feels to use your legs and feet to walk. What may feel uncomfortable to you is the body re-learning how to walk correctly. Continue to take one step at a time until your feet are still pointing forward after your step.
~What Exactly Do These Exercises Do?
Ultimately what “Standing And Correcting” and “Walking And Correcting” do is re-program your muscles to walk correctly. In the end, you are training your hip joint to move in a correct path while walking. By correcting the hip joint lateral rotation your pelvis will automatically balance itself. Re-programming your muscles may take time. Be patient with yourself and keep at it. Lateral Rotation is one a major factor in low back pain because of the Anterior Pelvic Tilt Lateral Rotation causes.
Suffering from low back pain can leave you immobile. Besides being in physical pain, energetically you may feel drained. Even so, make movement priority one. Failing to do so sooner or later can leave your completely incapable of moving at all!
Lack Of Movement
Lack of movement is another major contributor to low back pain. After all the body is not meant to sit. That is to say the human body is designed to stand and move about. Today’s stagnant computer lifestyle is not at all what we are designed for. Ask yourself, how long did a caveman sit? Not long at all is the correct answer. Now don’t be confused. Certainly I’m not saying you have to get a gym membership or anything like that. Basically just get up and walk around. Take longer strides when you walk. As you walk think about relaxing your low back and allowing your legs to work freely. When you relax and focus on walking correctly you will find will be amazed at how much better you’ll feel.
How Often Should I Walk Or Move Around?
As often as possible. Once a day is not good enough. I’ll just be honest with you. You should have a focused relaxed walk at least 2-3 times a day. Roughly 15 – 30 minutes or more each time. The idea is to get mobility and relaxation to relieve your low back pain. See the “Lateral Rotation” section below for tips on walking correctly to stop low back pain.
Make Movement Priority One Daily
There were days that crippling low back pain kept down however my goal was to minimize those days. No matter what I tried to make movement priority one daily. You should too. Despite what you may be thinking I am not telling you to run a mile. Certainly for some of my readers walking will be difficult while running will be impossible. On the contrary, any movement will do. Even if you can only make snow angels in your bed, do it. You will get significantly more benefit from moving your arms than nothing at all.
Do The Maximum Movement You Are Capable Of
Regardless of what the movement is do the maximum amount of movement you are capable of every day. To put it another way, if you can move your arms straight above your head then do it. Do it multiple times too. In the same fashion if you can walk around the block 10 times do that also. Ultimately your goal is to retain the maximum amount of movement you have at the current moment. Do not let low back pain stop you from moving the rest of your body.
Move It Or Loose It
Chances are you have heard the phrase “Move It or Loose It”. This phrase refers applies to your body too. Undeniably when you stop moving to your maximum Range Of Motion your range of motion will decrease. Additionally, prolonged periods of sedentary lifestyle can lead to Atrophy. Atrophy is a medical term for the decrease in muscle tone or mass. An example of this is a person that has had a cast on a broken arm or leg. If you have seen them when the cast is removed you will notice that the casted arm or leg will be smaller that it was before the broken bone. The reduction you see in muscle size is called Atrophy. In like manner when you don’t move for a long period of time all of your muscles are subject to Atrophy. For this reason I say make movement priority one!
If You Can, Walk!
Most effective recoveries happen when back pain suffers make movement priority one. To that end walking correctly can be instrumental to a speedy recovery. Mall walking or street walking, the choice is yours but get up and get out. A walking exercise that I do commonly is I will walk as far as I can away from my house. Then when I get too tired I get in a taxi and go home. This exercise works great if you are in an urban area however, this may not work for everyone. An alternative is to arrange a taxi to pick you up or have a friend meet you at a specified destination, like your favorite restaurant. Use your ending destination as a reward. Pick some place good. Like an ice cream shop!
Movement Is Good But Do It Correctly
To emphasize, movement is good but do it correctly. Especially if you are in a heightened state of pain. An example would be lifting with your legs. In fact, if you have low back pain you may want to practice proper lifting. A great exercise is picking up a piece of paper. There is only the weight of your body so when you squat down you only have to focus on your posture, not potential weight. Similarly walking correctly. Make sure your feet face forward with every step. If your feet turn in or out you are not moving correctly. Slowly make adjustments and get your feet to point straight ahead. Likewise, if your movement is snow angels in your bed do some with your palms together and some with your palms facing out.
Recommended Reading For Movement
Unquestionably there are hundreds of books on movement and stretching however a few of them really stand out. Among the best is “Stretching” by Bob Anderson. With simple illustrations in a large format, every stretch you’ll ever need is in this book, ironically called Stretching.
Second is “Life After Pain” by Dr Jonathan Kuttner. In this book Dr. Kuttner guides you along the path to eliminating chronic pain of all kinds. Dr. Kuttner explains what causes your pain and offers outstanding techniques to help you back to health. Most notable techniques are Dr. Kuttner’s breathing exercises.
The third book I recommend is “Mobility: A Step-by-Step Guide to Treating Musculoskeletal Pain Yourself” by Dr. Nick Chretien. Dr. Chretien writes from a perspective of crossfit/weight training however the techniques he teaches in the book are outstanding. Dr. Chretien takes you through understanding myofascial pain which is a key factor in all types of pain.
I added the recommended reading above in the hope that you continue on the path and make movement priority one everyday. Moreover, please share this with friends and loved ones who live with pain. Friendly love and support is sometimes the second best medicine … second only to laughter 🙂
Wondering why I say cheap office chairs cost more? In this article I will answer that question and a few others. Above all, this is an article you want to send to the HR department of every major corporation in America.
Cheap Office Chairs
Cheap office chairs are HUGE! As a rule your office chair needs to have a 100% stable seat. If you feel the seat tilt left or right while you are sitting in it, the chair is cheap. Invest in an office chair with quality construction. Cost is a factor when you buy a quality office chair. Quality chairs will outlast cheap $200 office chairs which makes quality office chairs less expensive. I have had my office chair for over 17 years!. At this point my office chair has cost me less than $100 per year.
~The Damage Cheap Office Chairs Do
The damage cheap office chairs do is immense. Having an office chair that has a weak seat that leans left and right when you move forces your low back to tighten to keep you stable. In short, your back is compensating for the cheap chair. When your back muscles are trying to hold you up on an unstable surface the muscles over contract which compresses your intervertebral discs. Low back compression leads to pain every time.
~Why Do Corporations Buy Low Quality Chairs?
A question I have always pondered is why corporations buy low quality office chairs for their employees. In fact, I worked for a company that took away good quality chairs and replaced them with poor quality chairs. Consequently the complaints around the office of pain skyrocketed. Rather than taking away the cheap chairs they put more in. Many employees began missing work to make appointments to see practitioners to reduce their pain. The domino effect caused by cheap office chairs costs corporations more money in insurance and employees missing work than if they provided proper seating. Seems counter productive.
Take a moment and calculate how many hours a day you sit at your desk. The average work day, presumably, is 8 hours. However we all know that is not really true. In fact ask just about any office worker and they will tell you their work day is closer to 10 hours. Still, lets take the “Average” of 7 hours per day. An 8 hour work day minus a 30 minute lunch and two 15 minute breaks.
7 hours per day x 5 days per week = 35 hours per week
Simple math. Next, lets take that out over a year.
35 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = 1,820 hours per year
Therefore you spend 1,820 hours per year sitting in your chair at work. Of course, keep in mind we did not factor in one single minute of overtime. In fact, more than 1/3rd of your day is spent sitting. For this reason you must invest in a good quality office chair. Even from a mindset of comfort. Besides, like I said, cheap office chairs cost more.
My Experience With Ergonomic Office Chairs
Presumably you are reading this because you are looking for an office chair that is “Ergonomic”. Another reason may be an office chair to stop low back pain. Since this website is all about sharing my expert knowledge and experience, allow me to share. Regrettably my experience with ergonomic office chairs has not always been great. By and large you will find that companies slap the label “Ergonomic” on a cheap office chair, misleading the buyer. Don’t fall for this trap. Here a some ways to tell if an office chair is truly ergonomic.
1.) The seat needs to made of wood not plastic.
2.) When you lean left or right the seat should not flex.
3.) There should be an adjustment for the lumbar support.
4.) The arms should adjust up and down at minimum, preferably they should swivel also.
5.) Look for contours that fit your body.
6.) Check for quality padding, preferably memory foam.
7.) The chair should come with a long warranty period.
“There is no greater feeling in the world than when a disabled person calls to tell you how their custom made chair has changed their life”
Cheap Office Chairs Cost More
Next lets dive into the meat and potatoes of this article. How cheap office chairs cost more. Not only to you, the user, but to your employer as well. Spending 1,820 hours in a chair is a heck of a long time. Consequently if you are sitting in a cheap office chair your body will be forced to compensate. Compensation occurs when the body does not feel stable on a surface. For example, think of how you feel when looking out the window of a tall building or crossing a bridge that you can see through. In these examples you get a visual indicator which cues your body to tense up to support itself. This is not the case with a cheap office chair, you don’t get the visual indicator. Thus, for many people, the body compensates and they do not realize it until compensation leads to pain.
Pain From Compensation
When I say compensation I am referring to the core muscles in your legs, hips, low/upper back, abdomen and neck. Pretty much your entire body is tensing to keep you steady on an unstable surface. Pain from compensation for improper seating is the leading cause of back and neck pain among corporate employees. I realize that is a bold statement. However, I’m not afraid to say it it layman’s terms either. The cheap chair the company provided you with is physically hurting you. Ironically, if you are in so much pain that you can’t work the Human Resource department might get you an “Ergonomic” chair. 🙂 Please refer to the statement above about poorly designed “Ergonomic” chairs.
The Pain Cycle
In the medical world there is something called “The Pain Cycle”. The Pain Cycle starts when you experience pain and go to see a medical practitioner for treatment. The practitioner helps you along, you take some time for recovery, and you feel better. Then you go back to the activity that caused the pain in the first place. This is The Pain Cycle. For example, the office worker.
An Example Of The Pain Cycle
For this example lets call The Office Worker Sally. Sally accepts this ongoing pain and decides it’s time to see her Doctor. She makes an appointment however Sally will have to take time off of work to go. The Doctor recommends Chiropractic care. Sally finds a Chiropractor and begins weekly treatment. The drawback is that each Chiropractic visit requires more time off from work. After weeks of sessions Sally’s pain is getting worse. So bad in fact that she takes medical leave from work for 4 weeks by recommendation of her Doctor. Incidentally Sally gets better and finally returns to work. Weeks pass and ironically Sally is feeling her pain again. This is a realistic example of The Pain Cycle.
Cheap Office Chairs Cost More … Here’s The Numbers
Once you start experiencing pain you start to see a Chiropractor, your Doctor, maybe a Physical Therapist because your insurance covers those practitioners. I invite you to dig into what those visits actually cost. Add up how much they bill the insurance and how much you pay in a co-pay. Don’t forget any prescriptions or devices these practitioners recommend. Next, factor in the days that you are not at work because of pain. What do you loose and what does your employer loose?
Next, take a look at the price of the LifeForm Office Chair. The cost of my chair was $1500.00USD, however I have had it for 17 years. In comparison to the cost of medical care I would say a LifeForm ergonomic office chair is pretty cheap, wouldn’t you? In any case you now know, in numbers, that cheap office chairs cost more.
Hands On Experience With LifeForm
LifeForm, like Teeter, was incredible to work with. In my time with the retailer I collaborated with LifeForm on many custom built chairs for people with uniques types of back pain and disfunction. Having hands on experience with LifeForm I can attest to the ethics of the team. In fact, I have worked with just about everyone there. From the receptionist to the production department. Actually it was an honor to work with a manufacture that really cared for the customer. There is no greater feeling in the world than when a disabled person calls to tell you how their custom made chair has changed their life. Together with LifeForm I was able to truly help people by creating seating that allowed them to work again.
Three Ergonomic LifeForm Office Chair Styles
Considering a LifeForm office chair is the best thing you can do to stop low back pain. Even a base model chair will help alleviate your back and neck discomfort. All LifeForm office chairs feature a contoured seat, adjustable swivel armrests and a wider caster base for increased stability. Purchase a LifeForm office chair today and experience true working comfort tomorrow.
LIFEFORM ADJUSTABLE CONTOUR TASK CHAIR
This is the base model office chair from LifeForm. At minimum this is what ALL corporations should be supplying their employees with.
Task Chair Features:
Ratcheting Adjustable Back Support
Swivel Memory Foam Armrests
Back Tilt Lock
Seat Forward Tilt
25″ Caster Base
LIFEFORM Management Grand Chair
This is the chair that I have had for over 16 years now. Mine has an UltraSuede fabric upgrade and a headrest but all of the functions are the same as you see here. This chair has saved me literally thousands of dollars in medical care. The Management Grand is the chair you want to have for your home office. Moreover, ideally all major corporations should make this chair the standard for employee seating. Management Grand Features:
Adjustable Lumbar Support
Contoured Memory Foam Seat
Ratcheting Adjustable Back Height
Swivel Memory Foam Armrests
Back Tilt Lock
Seat Forward Tilt
25″ Caster Base
LIFEFORM MID BACK EXECUTIVE OFFICE CHAIR
The Executive Mid Back by LifeForm is an amazing feat of office chair engineering. When you sit in the Executive Mid Back you will feel support like you never have before. The seat and back literally cradle your body and the memory foam gives you firm, yet forgiving, support. Adding the optional headrest makes the Executive Mid Back the best ergonomic office chair on the market in my opinion.
Executive Mid Back Features:
Adjustable Lumbar Support
Ratcheting Adjustable Back Height
Contoured Memory Foam Back
Contoured Memory Foam Seat
Swivel Memory Foam Armrests
Back Tilt Lock
Seat Forward Tilt
25″ Caster Base
There is no doubt of the relation of hip tension and low back pain. As a rule when a client complained of low back pain, hip tension is almost always present. In this article we’ll be looking at how hip tension and low back pain are related. Additionally, steps you can take to reduce both.
In my years as a clinical massage therapist I have had hundreds of clients see reduction or outright elimination of low back pain. By and large majority of them get amazing results from releasing the tension in their hips. I’m going to let you in on a secret. The legs and the back are not two separate parts. They work together 100% of the time. There are muscles in your hips that directly relate to and release muscles in your low back. In fact there are multiple hip and leg muscles that can have positive effects for low back pain.
To stop low back pain the best is to find a clinical massage therapist that understands myofascial, trigger point and muscle belly release techniques. On the other hand regular relaxation massage will not help you. Your massage session should be 1 hour minimum and focus strictly on your low back and hips. That means no fru-fru, oily slip and slide. A good clinical massage therapist with use very little oil, if any at all.
Topical Balms Are Only Temporary. Seek Clinical Massage.
Hip Tension and Low Back Pain And How They Relate
To truly understand low back pain you need to learn a little anatomy. Getting a basic grasp of what is going on will help you understand hip tension and low back pain and how they relate. In short, all of the muscles in your low back, hips and thighs attach to each other in one way or another. Furthermore, there are muscles such as Illio-Psoas that directly attach to your thigh bone (Femur) and you lower back vertebrae (L3,L4,L5). Additional back pain contributing muscles are Gluteus Medius, Gluteus Maximus, Piriformis and Quadratus Lumborum. These muscles are just a few of the key players that cause low back pain. What ties them all together is your pelvis or Illium. Here are some gif’s and illustrations to help you understand.
Why These Photos Are Important
There is a huge reason why these photos are important. The above photos show you how your low back, pelvis and hips are all connected with muscles. Each muscle relies on another to function correctly. If one or more of the muscles are not functioning correctly the other muscles will try to compensate. The compensation is what generally leads to pain.
The Hips Are The Hub
Imagine the hips are the hub connecting your lower body to your upper body. The muscles that attach at the hips and pelvis are some of the strongest muscles in your body. Thus they can do a lot of damage especially when it comes to low back pain. For this reason releasing hip tension is an important step to low back pain recovery.
Self Care Technique
With the topical treatments below, use this effective self care technique to help release hip tension and low back pain.
You Will Need:
Relaxing Music/Guided Meditation With Headphones
You Will Do:
1.) Apply topical treatment cream or gel.
2.) Put on loose fitting clothing such as Thai Fishing Pants or Loose Yoga Pants.
3.) Lay face up on your bed with your legs spread apart as far as you can comfortably get them.
4.) Place one pillow under each thigh just BELOW your buttocks.
5.) Place a pillow under your low back if needed.
6.) Put on your headphones with relaxing music or meditation guidance.
What Will Happen:
During your relaxation session you will begin to notice release of tension. Next, you may experience non-painful twitches as your muscles release. In fact, this is normal and very beneficial. The topical treatments will assist in relaxing the muscles in your hips and low back. The relaxing music or guided meditation you use will assist in quieting your mind. It is important that you turn off your thoughts to allow your body to self heal.
Positional Release Technique
This self care exercise is know as a Positional Release Technique. By placing your body in a position where muscles are in a slackened or loose state, the muscle will naturally reprogram itself and release. I strongly recommend a Guided Relaxation Meditation with this technique because you will be guided on how to properly relax. In my opinion guided meditations are a necessary part of self healing.
The Non invasive pain healing technique mentioned above is one of many that can help you self heal. At this point you should have a very basic understanding of hip tension and low back pain. As a result you’ll get amazing pain reduction from Positional Release. Please leave a comment with how you felt before and after using the technique. No doubt your comments will help future visitors.