Reduce Your Back Pain By Focusing On Muscle Stability Instead Of Strength
When it comes to recovering from a back injury and reducing the long-term pain that is often associated with damaged tissues in the back, it is important for patients to work on the stability of their spines. Without a certain level of stiffness in the muscles and connective tissues attaching to the spine, the back is very unstable and can tolerate only very low levels of compressive forces. This can often exacerbate injuries or cause further damage to an already unstable spine, which makes increasing stability very important.
It should come as no surprise to many people that one cause of back pain is a general weakness in certain muscles of the abdomen and the back itself. In order to pick up an object and carry it, various muscles are used to project force, while others are used to support the spine and keep it in a position of low risk of injury. If any of the muscles are atrophied and weakened, especially the back muscles, instability may result and a buckling of the spine may occur even when picking up light objects. Thus, it is important to train all of the relevant tissues of the back to eliminate weaknesses causing instability.
In fact, no single muscle should create too much or too little force or stability when supporting the spine in a movement. The muscles must maintain the right balance in order to lift an object without causing disc herniation or straining connective tissues. Too little muscle activation will create an unstable spine and may lead to injury. But too much muscle activation in a certain muscle or group of muscles can place greater stress and compression on the spine, also leading to a serious injury. Balance is key when preventing back injuries.
People concerned with the health of their backs, though, also need to understand that it is not just the overall strength of their muscles that contributes to a stable spine. In fact, back strength itself correlates somewhat poorly with injury prevention. Instead, muscle endurance should be the focus of a training or rehabilitation program, as this endurance factor is more closely associated with reducing pain and preventing further injury to the back.
Along with endurance, the focus should be placed on proper movements and motor control. Maintaining a neutral spine and having good posture when lifting or moving objects is extremely important in preventing pain and injury in the back which most of the spine surgery specialist in Austin always tell their patient to do; to have better recovery of the damaged muscle tissue that prevents the swelling over the lower back. This is why the first step in recovering from a back injury is often grooving proper movement patterns in patients. Eliminating improper motor controls that led to tissue damage will usually come before performing exercises to increase stability and muscle endurance.
Too many back patients are prescribed poorly-chosen exercises to increase strength and flexibility of their spines after an injury. Unfortunately, these two factors are not nearly as important as, and may often contradict, the goals of increasing stability, grooving proper movement patterns, and building muscle endurance. As always, the focus should be on the right issues when people are attempting to reduce pain and gain their lives back after a serious back injury.