Do You Have A “Bad Back”?

Do You Have a “Bad Back”?

It is not uncommon for people to experience low back pain sometime in their life.  However, because the human body is so complex, the problem area is generally not where the pain seems to point.  Unless you have disc herniation or fractures it is important to look at other areas of the body to reduce the low back pain.  It is important to understand the function of the low back, or lumbar spine.  Physical Therapist, Gray Cook, promotes the Joint By Joint Theory.  This theory states that joints alternate between mobility and stability as their primary functions.  The lumbar spine primarily serves as a set of stability joints. The thoracic spine (upper back) and the hips are joints that are meant to provide mobility.  When these joints are no longer as mobile as they should be then stress is placed on the low back and core stability is compromised. The low back muscles tend to be overactive and overworked because the glutes, hamstrings and abs are not being used efficiently.  Often times we are not using our glutes therefore the hamstrings are working overtime. Not only do we need to focus on increasing our mobility in hips and thoracic spine, but we also need to work on core stability. You can’t work on one and not the other or else the problems will persist.  Here are some suggestions on exercises you can perform to increase mobility and stability:


-Use foam roller or lacrosse ball on glutes and hamstrings

-Pinwheel or Pigeon Stretch

-Foam roll upper back

-Bretzel Stretch





-Leg Lowering

If you are experiencing a “Bad Back” talk to the coaches at GFNH so that we can help you determine the best exercise to promote mobility, stability and function.

-Coach Erin

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