Low back pain is one of the most common causes of injury. Almost everyone will experience low back pain at some stage of their life. Low back pain can affect anyone, of any age, and due to our changing daily behaviours of how we use our body, low back pain has become one of the most common reasons someone seeks help from one of our Chiropractors or Physiotherapists at Perth Allied Health Clinic.
Why does my low back feel tight?
Common causes of reduced low back mobility are prolonged abnormal postures and repetitive movements performed over and over. These days, we find ourselves in poor postures for many reasons, but most commonly we have become glued to our desks and are sitting for excessive time periods. As we sit, we have become lazy and it is likely you begin to slouch, this begins to tighten up our low back through the pressure we apply on our spine, intervertebral discs and surrounding muscles.
Repetitive movements are also a key contributor to low back tightness. Most commonly with repetitive movements, we find people performing for time and efficiency, whilst neglecting their body position and subsequently this can cause significant discomfort. Another important element is that to perform repetitive movements throughout your day, it is best to prepare for these by already having a good foundation of fitness, mobility and strength. This will help your body work for longer, and reduce the likelihood of injury occurring.
When we continue to put our body under these stresses, we start to experience changes such as tension building in joints and tightness through our muscles. As we perform abnormal movements, our bodies begin to adapt and weaknesses may develop in our muscles surrounding our low back. If this continues to occur, we may start to become deconditioned and more prone to recurrences of low back pain.
At Perth Allied Health Clinic, our team of chiropractors and physiotherapists are trained to accurately assess, diagnose and treat the cause of your low back pain and help get your mobility back.
Quick exercises to improve low back mobility
With any of our team of health care professionals, you not only get a hands-on treatment approach, but we also encourage you to perform exercises combined with our care to give you the best results. We all need to start taking action to promote healthy movements and behaviours. Here we have combined three of our top mobility exercises you can perform to move your spine and the surrounding muscles, along with promoting healthy movements that counter our poor daily habits of abnormal postures and repetitive movements.
Cat Cow – This exercise encourages segmental movement of your vertebrae from your hips to your lumbar, thoracic and cervical spine- something not usually done combined.
- Begin this movement by getting onto all fours with knees and hands shoulder width apart and relax your spine.
- Start by arching your back from your tail bone to your low back/lumbar spine, midback/thoracic spine by rounding your shoulders and drop your head down.
- Follow this by reversing the movement by lifting your head up looking ahead of you, start to segmentally arch your back by rolling your shoulders back and picture you are pushing your tail bone to the ceiling.
- Perform this movement 15 times and repeat these 3 times.
Childs pose – This movement is to be performed gently, with the emphasis being on the gentle falling of your buttocks and hips towards your heels.
- Remember to keep your arms extended overhead and picture yourself reaching for an object.
- Minimal stretch may be felt, but this exercise is designed to elongate your low back and hip muscles over time, with minimal force.
- Hold this movement for 30 to 45 seconds and repeat 5 times.
Knees to chest – This exercise aims to improve mobility in your lower back and stretches the muscles around your hips.
- Lie on your back and begin by bringing both of your knees held together to 90degrees
- From here and if you feel comfortable, you can place your arms around your knees and pull both knees towards your chest.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds and repeat 5 times. If this is too long, release your legs at a time that feels comfortable.
- To advance this movement, you may also combine the knee to chest with gentle side to side rolling of your knees. Be cautious not to rotate your lower body and hips too much from the ground.
Visiting Your Chiropractor or Physiotherapist
If you have found any of this information helpful and want to start making health lifestyle changes in your life, then make an appointment with our team of chiropractors and physiotherapists. Spinal adjustments are an effective treatment for low back pain. A good rehabilitation program will help give you the strength to keep yourself conditioned. Once your body is back to functioning at its best, and you have implemented everything correctly, you will see and feel the difference of a healthy spine and body can make in your life.
At Perth Allied Health Clinic our team is here to help answer your questions.