As a massage therapist I have recently noticed that there are a lot of people out there with low back pain! It has been interesting observing pain patterns (in my practice) slowly shifting south. I certainly have no problems working on glutes and am getting quite good at getting to those pesky tight areas but wouldn’t it be nice to get a massage just to relax rather than because of trying to relieve low back issues?
I, therefore, thought I would write this brief post to give some suggestions about preventing low back pain. I want you to enjoy your time on my table!!! Here are my suggestions:
1. Watch Your Weight. I am not talking about being skinny or malnourished. But having more weight, especially around one’s midline, can cause back muscles to work harder to hold you erect. This, in turn, can cause those back muscles to begin to spasm.
2. Strengthen the Abdominal Muscles. Again, not about being skinny but when the abdominal muscles themselves are weak, this puts an added burden on the back muscles. If your abdominal muscles are weak AND you have extra weight around your middle, this could end up causing you pain.
3. Exercise and Stretch. All exercise is good but functional exercises are wonderful. These are exercises that imitate things you do in your daily life, i.e., bending, twisting, lifting, squatting, etc. Having strong muscles that are also fluid and flexible is an optimimum way to help prevent low back pain. No one likes to make a sudden move and feel that sharp stab of a strained muscle! Keeping the muscles in good working condition is always in order.
4. Drink Water. Keeping the muscles well-hydrated is a good way to keep them functioning properly. Make sure your water is the best it can be. I personally own a Kangen water ionizer and find it to be one of the best investments I have made for me. I also bring Kangen water in for my clients (if interested in finding out more, please go to bhniwater.com).
5. Use the 80/20 Rule. What is this, you might ask. We all know that what we eat is an important factor in how our bodies function. But, sometimes it is just difficult to pass up some of those things we want that we know are not good for us. So, try to live by the 80/20 rule which is basically ensuring that at least 80% of what you eat is healthy and good for you. Then, when you make a less than stellar decision, the effects are not so bad because everything else has been healthy!!
So, these are the ideas I have had for keeping back pain at bay! Our backs are important and you never realize HOW important until it hurts!! Let’s try to keep it from getting there!! And, hey, come get a massage every now and again!! A massage, along with all the above, will help keep you and your back happy!!