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Back Pain

Tips and benefits to helping
with low back pain
Want some just some of the easy tips to help reduce or avoid low back pain.  See the tips below to easy and instantly implement into your daily life. These tips come from years of education and experience helping people improve their ability to move and recover quicker; allowing them to continue or get back to the activities they love. They are easy, innovative, vastly different from traditional physical therapy and rehab. You will have experience and design to develop simple solutions to the most complex problems.

What does this mean? It means these tips will disrupt your pain, not your everyday life. I know you need simple techniques that mitigate pain while improving overall movement. 

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Simple tips for improved back health:

Swing your arms when you walk: This helps improve triplanar movement of the joints and overall balance. Arms are made to move away from the body. To reach and to alternate to allow rib cage mobility. When swinging the arms, make sure it is the arm that is swinging and not just the elbow bending and straightening.

Avoid mouth breathing: Mouth breathing is being found to be one of the most dangerous things for overall health. Nasal breathing helps flush toxins, improve cardiovascular performance and calm your system.

Mouth Taping at Night: Mouth taping at night ensures that you are keeping your mouth closed while sleeping.  Snoring, restless sleep and dry mouth are all sure signs of mouth breathing at night. This effects airway position, O2 and CO2 balance and has been linked to many health conditions (cardiovascular in particular as well as high sympathetic drive)

Avoid Your Electronic Devices: Remember the bedroom is for sex and sleep.  Stay off your devices before bed. Avoid blue light.

Using MyoTape: If you're not sure which one is best for you, setup a consultation so we can locate ideal product and placement that's particular to your own needs.

Get good sleep: Many people have back pain at night. Good quality sleep if very important. Sleep is when bodies heal, regenerate, and recover. Side sleeping or back sleeping is recommended, and stomach sleeping should be avoided in most situations if possible.

Optimal Left sidelying sleep to avoid back pain: Try placing a pillow under the left lower rib cage for positional assistance for breathing and expansion or try place a pillow between the knees so that your feet can still touch for optimal pelvic position while lying with your left side down.

Optimal right sidelying sleep to avoid back pain: Try placing a pillow between your feet so that your knees are making contact for optimal pelvic position while lying with your right side down 

Do not stretch your hamstrings. I understand that all activities, including stretching, have a time and a place.  Stretching is rarely something that I teach. Clients tell me all the time that they have pain because they never stretch or because they are not flexible. Muscles cannot lengthen and shorten if the joints that these muscles attach to cannot move through a normal range of motion.  No amount of stretching is going to help if the joints themselves are restricted, abdominals are weak, pelvic position is altered, ribcage is restricted, teeth are clenching, or the diaphragm is not working efficiently. Get this... stretching can often hinder recovery or further dysfunction if not performed correctly.

Wear good shoes: I tell my clients that good shoes can often solve 80% of any pain issue.  Good shoes can protect your foot from rolling too far in or out, help your brain sense what your foot is doing when it hits the ground, and help with full body positioning and posture.  Current footwear trends like minimalist shoes, flip-flops, sandals, and heels do not give the body the support or the input to the brain that it needs to help you maintain a safe and functional posture. These shoes are okay for special occasions or short durations, but good shoes should be a staple in your closet. Good shoes help with joint pain, alignment issues, balance, proprioception, and performance.

To find out what shoes would be best for your particular posture, lifestyle and needs; setup an appointment with me to get your proper shoe size, shape and fit.

Breath with intention.  The inhalation should be slow and silent through your nose and then slow and LONG out through your mouth.  The room should be quiet, and the eyes should be closed.  Lay in a 90-90 position, child’s pose, hands and knees, long sitting, or kneeling. You can change the nervous system from fight or flight to rest and digest within 30 seconds of intentional breathing.

Here are some of the changes you can expect when you try these easy modifications:

  • Improve balance and movement with walking
  • Improved distance with walking
  • Better pressure management to decrease areas of pain
  • Feel less pain when you wake in the morning
  • Bend and lift without discomfort
  • Feel more comfortable when sitting for longer periods of time
  • Decrease risk for serious injury
  • Sleep better
  • Improve exercise performance
  • Decrease headaches
  • Improved ability to take a deep breath and improved breathing
  • Potential for a lower respiratory rate and heart rate with exercise
  • Calm throughout your overall system
  • Improved movement variability in the ribcage, spine and pelvis
  • Better sleep
  • Decrease stress
  • Less stress on your heart
  • Improved ability to keep lungs clear
  • Improved sex drive
  • Fat loss
  • Feel free to reach out to me for a consultation appointment so we can begin your path to improved health.
    - Paige McNerthney PT, MPT, PRC, PCES, CSCS, CKTP