Monday, May 13, 2013

Mobility Monday: Two Ways To Relieve Low Back Pain

Do you sit? I bet you sit sometimes. In fact, I bet you sit on your butt a lot. Even if you destroy the gym everyday, my guess is, at some point during the day, you smash your hind end into a chair and chill. Wanna know why we as a civilized nation have so many back problems? We sit in chairs. In third world countries they don't sit much. If the move to a relaxed position, it is a squat...a deep one.
In third world countries there are few slipped disks and achy backs. They have healthy backs despite struggling in other areas of quality of life (according to us...)

So how do we get a healthier back? Strength training and keeping a healthy weight is key of course. But what about healthy muscles?

Your butt is most likely a tight ball of angry muscle.
You gotta stretch that backside! Do this:
The Figure Four
I am my own camera person in the gym...

1. Keep your back strait.
2. Try and stretch that glute by moving the bent leg towards your torso.

You will feel a serious stretch in your butt! Work towards getting that leg to torso and breathing through the stretch for 20 seconds on and off for around 5 minutes each side. EACH DAY! You will fee so much better.
Then, you need to stretch the low back and create a healthy track for your hips to move in. The tighter our muscles get the weaker our hips are and the more out of alignment our hip joint gets. We should take a hint from our third world dwelling friends guessed it, SQUAT!
Pay no attention to my slight butt wink. I'm working on it!

The Paleo Squat, Caveman Squat, Tribal Squat...whatever you call it, is a great tool in getting a healthy, pain free low back.
1. Get low.
2. Push pelvis forward
3. Keep knees wide
4. Hang out down there as long as you can!
5. Hang on to a chair or pole to steady yourself if needed.
6. When you come back up, stick your butt out and use your legs to go up.

Start with about 15 seconds in that low squat and work your way up to around 10 minutes a day. You will be surprised how difficult this drill is. Despite the difficulty, it will do you nothing but good!

After a few days of the figure four drill and low squat, you will find ease in your stance and less pain in your lower back. Don't forget to pace yourself and be patient. Also, these keys are only a few pieces of the puzzle. Take care of your body with good nutrition, lose extra weight, exercise, and lift weights functionally!

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