Self Fix Back Pain

Back pain is usually caused because one section of the back is doing too much to compensate for another section that’s doing too little {so we will be looking at getting the entire back working better}.

The back can move in three planes – sagittal (back & forth), frontal (side to side), transverse (rotational). We will be focusing on the sagittal plane as this is the area most people struggle with and improvement here usually improves the other movements (frontal and transverse).

First, we will focus on the lower back and later add the upper back

Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. We will use the front of the pelvis as the reference point – as it moves, the lower back will follow.

  1. Slowly rock your pelvis towards your feet causing your lower back to arch.
  2. Then slowly rock your pelvis towards your head causing your back to flatten.

This is one rep and you will need to do 5 reps every day for a week. The movements should be slow and controlled and if they cause pain or discomfort, stop immediately. Focus on the quality and smoothness of each movement.

With both movements, avoid using your leg (pushing into the floor) and generating the movement from the upper back

 

Once you have done this daily for a week, we can add in the upper back. We will use the ribs as the reference point – as the ribs moves, the upper back will follow.

  1. As the pelvis rocks down (creating an arch in the lower back), lift the ribcage upwards aiming toward your head, not the ceiling (not directly up). This will arch in the upper back.

Avoid taking a deep breath – a deep breath will lift the ribcage up but the spine will not move/arch. Also, avoid pushing your shoulders into the floor – this will lift the spine up but the spine itself will not move.

  1. Next, rock the pelvis upwards (flattening the back) and then bring the ribcage down (flattening the upper back).

This will be one rep and you will need to do 5 reps per day. With both movements, the neck should be relaxed (no pushing into the floor) and the head should stay on the floor. If you are unable to keep your head on the floor, place a pillow under it.

The movements should be slow and controlled and if they cause pain or discomfort, stop immediately. Focus on the quality and smoothness of each movement.

Finally, you may find my last post about foot health and its effects on the body/spine useful.