What To Do When You Strain Your Lower Back?
Coach Chris: Now I’m a pretty active person, I exercise regularly. I have a tendency to overdo things sometimes and strain my lower back and for days it bothers me. It’s achy and it’s stiff. I feel like I’m not sure what I should be doing.
Should I just rest and not do anything? Or is there something particular that I should be doing to alleviate the pain.
Rick Kaselj: If it’s so bad that it changes what you do on a day-to-day basis, then rest for a day or two.
Coach Chris: I feel the pain when I am just sitting.
Rick Kaselj: If it’s a kind of annoying, keep doing what you’re doing.
But if it’s like “Oh my God, I got to lie down,” if you got to lie down and you can’t do what you regularly do, take two days off.
If it’s just like “Oh man, it just won’t go away,“ what I would recommend for you to do is to keep doing what you’re doing, just take it a notch or two down below.
I am not saying don’t ever go to the gym but you’re not going to do your max deadlift. You might end up focusing on other stuff – might be more of a cardio day. It might be more of an isolation day that you would end up doing. Because the big thing that might end up happening is you will make your back pain worse.
It’s like these conversations in our heads that are going on like “okay, if I do this, it’s going to get worse or it will get irritated.” The more you kind of distract yourself and just keep on living without thinking that the faster that you will end up recovering.
Coach Chris: Maybe workout around it and do things, maybe isolation lifts that keep my back in a safe position and give it a few days, hopefully it will calm down a little bit then get into stretching?
Rick Kaselj: No. When it comes to stretching, it builds on what you said, I would work around it. If your back is bothering you, I would recommend you to work on your hips.
- Work on the mobility of your hips.
- Work on stretching your hips.
- Work on your Thoracic mobility.
You can end up working above and below things that’s going to help with your back. Because with back pain, everything tightens up in order to protect that back.
If you kind of loosen up the mobility in your mid-back and loosen up the tension in your mid back, that’s going to help your lower back, that’s what I would recommend doing.
Coach Chris: Thank you.
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Rick Kaselj, M.S