Get Moving: Exercising with Chronic Low Back Pain – Part 2
By Dr. Kyla Nelson, DC & Acupuncture Provider
Unfortunately, low back pain is the most common musculoskeletal injury, affecting up to 80% of adults during their lives. It negatively affects our jobs, as well as daily activities such as chores and recreational hobbies.
It has become relatively well known that the best form of therapy for chronic low back pain (lasting longer then 6 weeks) is exercise therapy.
Following up from last week, today we will be discussing the benefits of building musculature and core strength to help combat chronic low back pain!
Musculature and Core Strength Training
Patients not only commonly present to the clinic with low back pain, but also exhibit reduced forward flexion, accompanied by complaints of pain primarily when going from sitting to standing or lying to sitting.
Recent research has consistently shown a link between weak core strength and chronic low back pain. It has also been shown that weak core strength can lead to lumbar instability and decreased forward flexion.
In an effort to reduce their pain levels, when patients experience low back pain they tend to restrict their movement. Unfortunately, this lack of movement leads to further reduction in forward flexion, increased lumbar instability and MORE low back pain!
It’s been demonstrated in research and clinical practice, that strengthening the deep abdominal muscles (such as transverse abdominis, multifides and spinae erectors) help stabilize the lumbar spine, improve posture, improve performance of activities of daily living and reduce overall low back pain.
Similarly to aerobic exercise, spinal stabilization exercise programmes should be prescribed and tailored by your chiropractor or physiotherapist, based on your own specific muscular weakness, pain patterns and physical examination findings.
Dr. Kyla Nelson is currently a licensed chiropractor and acupuncture provider at Holland Landing Health Centre in East Gwillimbury, Ontario. If you have any questions concerning chronic low back pain or exercise please contact Holland Landing Health Centre at [email protected] or 905-853-7900.
Gordon, Rebecca, and Saul Bloxham. “A Systematic Review of the Effects of Exercise and Physical Activity on Non-Specific Chronic Low Back Pain.” Healthcare. Vol. 4. No. 2. Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2016.