Suffering from back pain can really dampen your physical activities. Realizing you can no longer hike a mountain the way you did before because of a spinal problem can cause a great mental health problem. But don’t despair. Doctors and fitness experts have come up with plenty of ways for people with spinal problems to work through it. Some of these exercises are even beneficial to the health of your spine, so not doing them is more detrimental to your health.
Be Aware of Your Body
The common misconception is that when a workout does not give you pain, it is not working. This is not the right thinking for people with spinal problems. Learn to listen to your body. If it is in pain, then the exercise routine isn’t working as it should. The reason why there are especially designed exercises for people with spinal problems or injuries is because the spinal cord is the most sensitive part of your body. Any injury on it can put you on the operating table and possibly in a wheelchair afterward.
Talk with your doctor about what kind of exercise you can do with the kind of spinal problem you have. You can also check out the Schroth method of physical therapy. This type of therapy is tailored specifically to the patient’s spine curvature and angle. It is customized to the patient’s spinal problems, which makes this therapy the best one for you.
Several Factors to Consider When Working out with a Back Pain
Before you start working out, you have to consider several factors first. The most important is what’s causing your back pain. If there’s a sprain in your spine, you may not be allowed to work out. Severe conditions such as fracture, spinal tumor, and chronic disease will have a different set of required exercises. Pain can come from different sources, so it’s important to find out the reason why you are having consistent back pain.
On the onset of back pain, how active have you been? A sedentary lifestyle can cause major back problems. If you’re always sitting down, then your spinal cord doesn’t get as much exercise as it can. Even with a tight back, don’t stay sedentary. Inactivity can worsen the pain in your back, so do light exercises until you work out a regimen with your doctor.
But if you are suffering from any pain at all, then that is a major cause for concern. It is important to detect where this pain is coming from. If there is pain when you are doing a certain type of exercise, then that may not be the routine for you. Performing the wrong exercises can worsen your back pain.
Get to Work and Walk
There is no reason for you to stop exercising when you have back pain that is not associated with injury or chronic disease. In fact, not exercising at all may even cause more pain. One overlooked form of exercise for people with spinal problems is walking. Instead of weight training and resistance, you can walk a few blocks and get your heart to pump faster. It is a kind of cardiovascular exercise that will not hurt your body.
Check Strength and Weight Training
A study found out that people with spinal problems can do strength and weight training. In fact, they experience less pain after a combination of using the weight machine and bodyweight exercises as compared to those who stopped these exercises. People always assume that they have to immediately stop weight training when they have a spinal problem. There are several factors to help determine whether this is right for you.
Once the doctors give you a go-signal, work with fitness experts. They can teach you the proper form when weight training. As a general rule, tighten your abdominal muscles before the exercise because this will protect your lower back and keep pressure off the spine.
Remember to Stretch, Warm up, and Cool Down
Whether you are experiencing back pain or not, the rules are the same: stretch, warm-up, and cool down. Skipping any of these steps will lead to more bodily pain than necessary. Stretching and warming up will prepare your body for more strenuous exercise while cooling down will allow your muscles to rest before you put pressure on it again by moving, walking, driving, and running.
The right workouts will help you to stay active and decrease the pain in your back. But remember that amid all these, the important thing is to work out a specific routine with your doctor. Whenever you are not sure about the steps that you have to take, reach out to medical experts such as your orthopedic and physical therapist. Never take your spine’s health for granted.