Lifestyle Physio Cronulla Blog

Victim or culprit?

When a patient presents with back pain, or any pain for that matter, we assess above and below the problem. Is the pain the result of something or the cause of something else? When you have back pain have you ever considered that your back might just be the victim?

We need to assess “around” to see what could be causing the back pain. At Lifestyle Physio Cronulla we pride ourselves in always finding the cause and never just treating the symptoms.

A review of current research in 2020 confirmed our suspicions. Looking at studies of over 1800 people with and without back pain they found significant lower limb dysfunction in people WITH back pain.

So if you come in for treatment of your sore back don’t be surprised when we test your hip strength, your hamstrings, your quads and even your calfs. Exercises to strengthen these areas will bulletproof your back, making it more resistant to fatigue and better able to manage load.

We previously believed core strength or stability was the root cause of all back pain. We know now that it is only part of the picture and while we still encourage our patients to learn good activation strategies and functional movements for their lifestyle- it isn’t the only thing we work on!

Victim or culprit?

Are your legs as strong as each other? And do they need to be? You only have to watch the paralympics to see that you don’t need symmetry to be strong and fast or to jump high or swim well. But what we do need is to have a body that is strong enough to manage the load we place upon it. So if you regularly run, your legs should be as strong as each other to avoid not only lower limb strain but your lower back “over-working”. Do you work using a hammer? Your dominant arm may need to be a lot stronger and your back too to manage this “imbalance”.

It is important to attempt to explain if the back symptoms are culprit or cause as this guides our treatment planning. And next time we see you don’t be shocked if you leave with calf raises or hamstring strengthening to treat your sore back- but be grateful it’ll stop you coming back again and again and again…

We can help you. Call us today 8544 8484.

Join hundreds of others and shape a life you love.

If you want more energy & flexibility but feel you’re too busy, sign up to receive our free ‘Get Active & Energetic 7 Day Challenge’.

If you’re into serious training and want to reduce your chance of injury, sign up to receive our free guide on ‘7 Habits Athletes Practice To Reduce The Chance of Injury’.