Back Pain

Back pain is the curse of the nation but can often be improved through specialised personal training. It is a shocking and sad fact that 80%, or eight in ten people, suffer with lower back pain one or more times in their lives. This crippling lifestyle disease accounts for more days lost at work than most other conditions put together. The large majority of non-specific lower back pain is caused by a lack of physical activity and incorrect posture, i.e. it is a condition brought on by our modern, inactive, lifestyle. We get up in the morning, drive to work, sit behind a desk all day long, often using computers, and slouch in front of the television when we get home. All of this, together with a sedentary lifestyle, will lead to untrained gluteus maximus muscles (backside) and tight hamstring muscles (back of thigh). Both together may pull the pelvis out of alignment which is a direct cause of the condition.

The lumbar back sits nicely between your rib cage and your bottom with the spinal cord running down the centre of it through the centre of the vertebrae. This is where the spinal nerves are located. The spinal column (or spinal cord) runs through the centre of the lumbar vertebrae. The vertebrae are separated and cushioned by inter-vertebral discs, which work as shock absorbers. They also allow you to flex and bend your spine. Each inter-vertebral disc is constructed of a soft gel like centre which is surrounded by a strong fibrous outer layer. Attached to the spine are very strong muscles and ligaments to hold the spine in place and allow you to move freely.

I am a highly qualified personal trainer, a member of the prestigious Register of Exercise Professionals at their highest level and I hold a GP Exercise Referral certificate. I have more than 20 years proven track record of helping my clients experience pain relief. If you too want to be free of lower back pain contact me now for your initial free consultation.

As I’ve mentioned above, most of today’s western population live a very sedentary life where sitting in a chair or the car is what most of us do most of the day. Some of those strong muscles that are attached to the spine get shortened over time while others are constantly stretched. This causes a muscle imbalance in the lumbar region, which in turn causes an imbalance of the lumbar vertebrae.
This imbalance may cause two vertebrae to force an inter-vertebral disc out of its position. This then presses on the nerves of the spinal cord leading to severe pain. This pain is called sciatica and it can travel down the back and bottom into the leg and even into the calf or foot. It can cause numbness as the nerves that transport electrical signals are impinged. Alternatively the fibrous outer layer of the inter-vertebral disc may rupture under the strong pull of the muscle imbalance and the gel like centre can ooze out, again causing pressure on the spinal nerves. I have helped many clients experience pain relief through my very specialised personal training programs and all of them are now pain free.

What is true for the lower spine is also correct for the thoracic spine or upper spine. Here, too, are strong muscles and ligaments attached to the vertebrae that can cause an imbalance in the thoracic spinal region if we do not engage in sufficient and correct exercises. Upper back pain or thoracic pain is less common  but it is nonetheless a very big problem amongst today’s population. If you want to stop suffering contact me now.

And then there is the proverbial pain in the neck or cervical spine. Pain in the cervical spine is, again, usually lifestyle related. A lot of our work these days is conducted on computer terminals where both arms/hands are constantly in front of the body. This leads to a shortening of the pectoral (chest) and anterior deltoid (front of shoulder)  muscles while the posterior deltoids (back of shoulder) and trapezius (back of neck) muscles are stretched. The vertebrae of the cervical spine are then pulled out of alignment causing pressure on the inter-vertebral discs in the cervical spine which may lead to a tingling sensation and pain in arms and fingers.

For lower back pain and upper back pain relief it is often enough to work certain muscles (or muscle groups) while stretching others. However it is important to have a correct diagnosis from your GP first to exclude the possibility of a cracked or fractured vertebrae before corrective exercises commence. Don’t wait until you suffer with back pain; contact me now to avoid it!