Are you tired of dealing with chronic low back pain?

I am going to go out on a limb and suggest that you are. Maybe you have tried a bunch of exercises, physical therapy, chiropractic treatments, heat, cold, meds, yoga, pilates and a bunch of other random stuff from the internet.

But, you still have low back pain (LBP). What’s the deal?

whats the deal.jpg

In many cases, people are performing the wrong types of exercises. The rest of you are doing the right exercises incorrectly.

Here’s the deal. Most personal trainers are not equipped to properly assess, manage and treat low back pain.

Sadly, many physical therapists, chiropractors and other docs or clinicians focus on the wrong treatments.

Medication does not fix the problem.

Listen, if you are in a ton of pain, take something to take the edge off. But please understand that meds DO NOT fix problems. They manage symptoms.

Most modalities are garbage.

Ultrasounds, laser, E-stim, heat and cold may help to manage pain but that is it. Most of these won’t work at all. If they do work, they, at best, manage symptoms but they DO NOT fix problems.

LBP is complex.

No one thing is going to resolve your back pain so stop looking for it. If you truly want to resolve your pain, you will have to tackle this on multiple levels. This means you will have to:

  • strengthen some areas

  • stretch others

  • change how you sit

  • change how you move

  • change how you lift

  • change how you bend

  • spend time focusing on movements that you have been doing for a long time and routinely do not think about

Now, it is not all doom and gloom over here. Although this list might seem overwhelming, there is much overlap between these ideas. Getting good at one improves others.

One of the first steps is to understand how to locate, brace and maintain a neutral lumbar spine position. This idea is SIMPLE BUT NOT EASY.

This is one of the biggest keys to performing these type of exercises correctly. If you do not spend time focusing on the movement and being deliberate with the movement, you WILL NOT GET BETTER.

Check out the tutorial. It will get you started on your road to resolving (not just managing) your LBP.

Set the low back position first by performing pelvic tilting. Arch the low back, flatten the low back and find the neutral in between.

Brace the abdominals to stabilize this position and focus on keeping you abs tight while moving your legs or the arms.

Keep the sets short (no more than 5 reps per arm/leg). The goal here is not increased strength or endurance, but improved motor control.

You want to improve positional awareness for the lumbar spine and teach your body how to brace the abs and stabilize the back while moving.

Most cases of LBP involve some level of instability in the low back. These exercises work to improve this instability. Failure to address this will lead to you staying the pain cycle you are currently in.

Be patient but be consistent. Be focused and deliberate.

If you need help working through your LBP, let’s hop on a call and see how I can help you resolve your pain.

Until next time,

Dr. Tom

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