“Nowadays, most people suffer from low back pain”. I still remember a doctor telling me that as he pushed a prescription for pain medication towards me. Didn’t do an exam, didn’t take any imaging of my back, just prescribed me some meds and called it a day. And sadly, it’s true. With how sedentary our lives have become, majority of people do suffer from back pain.I’ve had low back issues since college, mostly stemming from hyperlordosis in my lumbar spine (excessive lordotic curve, also known as “sway back”) and diminishing core strength as I stopped working out as hard as I was in high school. Over the years I’ve learned how to manage it but prolonged standing always gets me – not the best when you’re an athletic trainer constantly on your feet working with athletes and covering practices and games!
The first time my back truly “went out” I was seriously reaching over to turn on the shower. That was all it took. The second time I was bending down to get into my mom’s car. People injure their backs doing the simplest of things, yet it ends up being one of the most debilitating injuries you can have.
That first time was 4 years ago and since then I have learned so much more about low back pain and treatments for it. And NONE OF IT INVOLVES PAIN MEDICATION. I work with patients every day in pain from things such as a disc herniation, facet pathology, sciatica, spondylosis, back surgery, etc. I love being able to teach people how to strengthen themselves to get out of pain and retrain their muscles to actually do their job and protect the spine. It helps that I’ve been there, in pain, trying to figure out what to do with myself.
Honestly, every day is a constant struggle with my back and I’m always holding my hips in a slight posterior tilt to relieve pressure off my low back. I am very aware of proper form with exercises and what may potentially cause more harm or pain. I’m smarter/wiser now with myself and not self conscious about being the one person in class doing a modification on an exercise – because who cares?! You do you 🙂