Help your back by strengthening your core
Statistics for lower back pain are pretty astounding. According to the American Chiropractic Association:
— 31 million Americans experience low-back pain at some point;
— Low back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide;
— Americans spend at least $50 billion every year on back pain;
— Back pain is the second most common reason for visits to the doctor’s office.
If you experience back pain on a regular basis, it may be time to consider building your core strength. Core strengthening is obviously very popular in the fitness world as a way to achieve a killer six-pack. But strong abdominal muscles go a long way in preventing back injuries, strain and overall pain.
Strengthening your core improves your posture, makes you less prone to back injuries and teaches you proper spinal alignment. These combine to help you avoid back pain on a daily basis.
Whether it’s lower or upper back pain that is bothering you, it could be rooted in weak abdominal muscles. Abdominal muscles are the front anchor of your spine, and if they’re weak the other supporting muscles must work harder for your spine. Strong abdominals, meanwhile, leads to a smaller likelihood of back strain and injury.
So how do you strengthen your core and/or fight back pain on a regular basis?
1) Exercise. If you workout, don’t neglect solid core work. Make sure you spend some time every workout hitting those abs. And if you don’t exercise regularly, you can easily work some core exercises into your day. Here are some great exercises from the Mayo Clinic to consider.
2) Lose weight. Excess weight puts more strain on your back and stomach. So drop some pounds and lose some pain.
3) Stretch. If you spend a lot of hours sitting at a desk hunched over and staring into a computer, make sure you take breaks and do some stretching for a few minutes here and there. These breaks are a huge help to your back.
4) Proper lifting technique. Make sure you lift properly, whether at work or in the gym. Pull your abs in and let them support your back and lift with your legs.
5) Get some sleep. Sleeping for 7-8 hours per night is key in total body function, especially your spine and muscles. Proper rest should never be neglected.
Your core is the center of your body and it needs to be strong for a number of reasons, one of the main reasons being to support your back and neck. Making sure your core muscles are strong can go a long way in helping whatever back pains you may deal with on a regular basis. And it’s a natural way to fight back pains without resorting to medications.
At Allison Family Chiropractic, we are adept at easing and preventing whatever back and neck pain you may be fighting. Whether it be through education, Dr. Allison’s treatments or our Licensed Massage Therapist, we have everything you need to feel 100 percent alive and well. Visit us at 3643 Shawnee Road, Lima, OH 45806 or call us at 419-991-0713 today to make an appointment.
Sources: Allison Family Chiropractic, The Mayo Clinic