Pain in the Back

Back pack is a common health issue for working populations. The constant discomfort affects mood and productivity, and can lead to chronic conditions or injury. Fortunately there are several things we can do from posture correction, diet and exercise to help prevent or reduce back and other joint pain. Read on for more!

Written by Jared Hoffmeyer, CFW Health Fitness Specialist

Posture concept. Man suffering from back pain while working with laptop at office

Back pain. Too many of us suffer from it. If you have it, you hate it and wish it on no one. If you don’t have it, keep it that way! Unfortunately, there are many things that can cause back pain and avoiding all of them can be quite a challenge. Common conditions related to chronic back pain (lasting longer than 3 months) are muscle or ligament strain, bulging or ruptured disks, arthritis, skeletal irregularities, and osteoporosis. Acute back pain (6 weeks or less) is more common than chronic pain and generally results from an injury (minor car accident, fall or heavy lifting) and can generally be relieved by simple home treatments and proper body mechanics. Along with others, age, sedentary behavior, excess weight, and improper lifting are all risk factors to developing back pain.

Living with back pain is not impossible. I have lived with back pain for 12 years as a result of a climbing accident. Falling 15 feet and landing on my upper back and neck has caused my spine to twist and multiple disks to bulge in different directions. The pain can be unbearable at times, but by listening to my body and following some treatment and prevention tips, I have greatly improved the health of my spine and the strength of my back. Follow these tips to keep your back strong and healthy too!

  • Exercise regularly with low-impact aerobic activities, like swimming and biking, to limit the impact placed on your lower back.
  • Focus on core strength and flexibility to support the spine.
  • Maintain a healthy weight to reduce the strain placed on the spine.
  • Watch your posture – sit and stand tall, support the lower back, and change positions frequently! Our bodies were not made to be in the same position (seated or standing) for hours on end.
  • Make sure your lifts are done properly. Focus on form first, then add weight. Always make sure you know how your body can best move the weight.

This month, our team of writers are bringing you important information on the different needs of the spine based on its shape and nutrition required for joint health. Be sure to check out tips for a healthy spine and the featured exercise of the month!

Additional Reference:

Mayo Clinic – Back Pain