In earlier blogs I’ve covered how important it is to keep active and maintain spinal health through movement. Today, I’m taking a look at the role of exercise and how, if carried out properly, it can help you recover and prevent problems recurring.
Studies have shown that a combination of cardiovascular and strength exercises coupled with chiropractic treatment are really important in the management of back pain. Such exercises can help strengthen, in particular, the lower back, keep patients working and help achieve a better quality of life.
For that reason I often tell my patients to carry out specific chiropractic back exercises as part of their treatment and urge upon them the importance of doing them religiously. Often, the use of resistance bands is recommended. They are relatively cheap to buy and can really help with strengthening.
But we know that exercises can help prevent problems too by strengthening the ‘core’ of the individual – lower back and abdominal muscles in particular. Pilates is very good for improving overall core strength and stability and, depending on the problems experienced by a patient, exercises that can help include flexion movements like pulling the knees to the chest, posterior pelvic tilts, bending forward from a sitting position and so on. In other circumstances, extension type exercises are more appropriate. Pelvic strengthening, hamstring stretching and balance promotion can all help during treatment and prevention.
One last word. If you are trying to improve your back strength get some proper advice first. Take a Pilates class run by a qualified instructor or speak to a personal trainer who knows what he or she is doing. If you have a problem and are receiving treatment from a chiropractor ask them about what exercises they recommend. Do NOT take advice from YouTube. I’ve seen some exercises there that I would certainly recommend but there are many that can cause some real problems – even if they are executed correctly.