5 STEPS to a Healthier & Stronger Back

Don’t let back pain stop you!

5 STEPS to a Healthier & Stronger Back

By Carl Weston, Head Coach, Push!FITStudio CHEK Level 4 Practitioner CHEK Holistic Lifestyle Coach L3

Don’t be part of the 80% who suffer with back pain and contribute to the $100 billion in health care and sick leave.

Introduction

Today almost everyone seems to have a bad back or had some experience with one. But the statistics are actually quite off putting. Especially as and when I work in health care and work with the body. According to recent studies, (Power et al 2006) 80% of people suffer with back pain, and 60% of those will suffer with back issues for less than 3 months (Donelson et al 2012). It is still the number one reason why people seek out medical advise whether from a doctor, physiotherapist or chiropractor. And still 50% of people in the work place will suffer and try and work through the pain (Pengel el at 2003). BUT reoccurrence is as likely as 60% in those who don’t seek professional advice. AND 70% of people will never seek out medical or professional help (backcarecanada.ca, 2013). In Canada alone we have seen an increase in MRI scans by 199% and an increase in MRI scans by 619% (backcarecanada.ca, 2015). Evidence supporting back pain clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) suggests that back pain is a benign self-limiting condition (Gross, 2006) (Patel et al 2000) 80% will suffer back pain, 70% never seek professional help. But sadly we are creating a society where these statistics will get worse. Now more than ever you will see more and more chiropractic clinics and physiotherapy clinics opening up. People are avoiding the big picture, the body speaks the truth and tells you so much, and today we are creating back pain by, not only poor exercise choices but by high stressed lives, poor food choices, poor sleep and mental health. People need to start taking care and have accountability for themselves. Follow the next few steps and easy to follow guide on how to heal your back pain and get yourself free from the aches and pains and immobility that back pain brings.

STEP 1: GET UP OFTEN

Sitting is the new smoking and for good reason. Sitting accentuates poor posture and shallow breathing patterns which have a direct link to back pain. It also creates short, tight muscles and long weak ones which = muscular imbalance! Where there is muscular imbalance, there is usually pain or injury around the corner. Avoid sitting at a desk or workstation for long periods of time. 54% of people experiencing low back pain spend the majority of their day sitting.

STEP 2: MOVE & TRAIN SMART

Many people train too hard, too fast or with too much intensity. You need to train smarter, not harder, to get the best results. Be SMART about the type of exercise you are doing and how. One of the biggest causes of back pain is from strains and sprains, from poor movement patterns – usually due to the fact that most people are too tight, tense and stressed and do not make time to work on their flexibility and mobility. Mobility refers to how much you can move or the range you can move a joint in.

STEP 3: ADDRESS YOUR DIET

Your stomach and back have a direct viscera somatic link and poor diet will make your back pain worse. When your gut is inflamed from eating stressful foods it directly SHUTS off your deep abdominal muscles (TVA) from being able to ‘turn on’ and support the spine! What we end up with is an unstable spine which can’t handle heavy loads or explosive fast movements well (which is what most people are doing). This results in an achy, sore back especially after running or working out.

“People grossly underestimate the POWER & EFFECT of food on their spinal health and exercise performance!”

STEP 4: BREATHE PROPERLY and BREATHE FULLY

Breath IS KEY. Believe it or not most people have what we refer to as an “inverted” breathing pattern. This is where they breath into their chest and not into the diaphragm and stomach. The primal culprits here are poor posture and stress. When we hunch over we limit our lung capacity and often we are hunched over AND stressing/anxious about work, kids, emotions… you name it! This creates a more rapid, short, shallow chest breathing pattern which doesn’t activate or engage your diaphragm – one of your KEY core muscles! Many people then take that breathing pattern right to the gym with them and make things worse as they add more stress (exercise) on the body. If you wan’t to get the MOST from your workout, MASTER your BREATH.

STEP 5: STAY HYDRATED

As with most other aspects mentioned again most people are dehydrated. We have 2 billion chemical reactions per second in the body and all of which require water. And the spine discs are nearly 80% water. Dehydration can cause discs to collapse and pain augmentation.

Interested in learning more about how to HEAL your back pain?! Join us for our FREE workshop on BEATING BACK PAIN on Thursday April 19 at 7:30PM. SPACE IS LIMITED! 

Want the FULL handout on 5 Steps to a Healthier and Stronger Back? CLICK HERE to download the free report!