Lower back pain is more than uncomfortable: it can make you feel depressed and useless. Everyday tasks such as going to work, cooking and walking can become a physical and mental challenge. The only way to feel whole again is to acknowledge the pain, recognize the symptoms and begin back pain therapy right away. In addition to treatments that include hot/cold therapy, inversion therapy and muscle balance therapy, you will need a range of exercises strengthen back muscles and alleviate back pain.
Exercise has proven highly effective in treating back pain. However not any old exercise will get the job done right. The exercises you will need to do in order to treat your back pain will depend on two factors: the cause of your back pain and the location of the pain.
The goal of exercise is to strengthen the muscles, relax and soothe the muscles and increase the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the affected areas in the back. However this requires the right exercises that target the area affected. Of course, exercise in general will get the blood flowing and relax the muscles because the back plays a major role in just about every basic human movement. But to strengthen the muscles in the back, targeted exercises are necessary.
If you have been diagnosed with sciatica or a herniated disc, you will need exercises that target the lumbar region, also known as the lower back. It is likely that you will need to perform lower back exercises regardless of the location of your back pain because the back is a unit and if one part suffers, the other parts suffer as well. These problems may be caused by trauma or injury, but in some cases it is due to an imbalance of opposing muscles.
Lower back pain can often be caused by a muscle imbalance in which one muscle is weaker than the other. A balance of muscle strength is essential for accurate movements and a centered spine in order to prevent or treat low back pain. When you suffer from a muscle imbalance, this simply means that opposing muscles work with different levels of tension or strength. During movement the body will favor the stronger side, placing undue stress on the joints.
A muscle imbalance may occur because of repetitive motions performed over a period of time. Simple activities such as sitting in an office, playing a sport with repetitive motions like tennis, soccer or golf or driving. These activities can cause one side of the muscle to become stronger than the other, leading to an imbalance. For most of us, the weaker side generally is our non-dominant side.
This imbalance can lead to what is called a ‘postural dysfunction’ which just means that spine is in an unnatural position. This can occur for a variety of reasons including poor posture, muscle degeneration or an imbalanced gait. This dysfunction of posture can pull on the spine, which over time can place a lot of tension on the spine and that leads to back pain.
The best treatment for low back pain due to a muscle imbalance is muscle balance therapy. Muscle balance therapy includes targeted stretches and exercises that address the causes of each patient’s postural dysfunction. Regularly performing these exercises and stretches will strengthen the weakened muscles and relieve tension on both sides for greater flexibility and mobility. Visit the Lower Back Pain Page to get started on instant low back pain relief.
The only way muscle balance therapy works is if the patient is committed to performing these exercises and stretches regularly.
Written By: Updated: August 25,2011