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My Aching Back

Monday, August 31, 2015

So it had gotten to the point that if I did a long grocery shopping or stood at the kitchen counter to chop veggies, or bake bread, the small of my back started telling me tales of woe and I would have to sit down for a while to quiet it down. I checked with the doctor to make sure I didn't have a kidney infection and I didn't. So I started doing several short shopping trips instead of one long one, stopped making so many meals that require chopping veggies, and stopped baking bread (which will be good for my waist line). I also started sitting a lot more, which is no fun.

So I went on line looking for answers and found the back exercises at Mayo Clinic. They seemed to be a good, gentle way to start working on the problem. After just a few days the small of my back was hurting less often, but soon my upper back started hurting. Apparently the exercises were exasperating a problem there. So I went on line looking for more answers and was brought to the realization that I've started getting a head forward posture and with that a rounded upper back from being on the computer so much . The Mayo Clinic exercises were working that area, which was why it ached. I looked further and found some exercises on physical therapists' sites that specifically target the area, picked out a few less aggressive ones to start with and added them to my routine. The first few days the exercises went fine but by evening my upper back was very achy. It's getting better now but I'm taking the time to lie down absolutely flat as soon as my back starts to complain so the pain can't get bad enough to stop me from being active, which is what was happening before I started exercising.

What surprised me about all this is that the head forward posture with rounded upper back is common among people who exercise regularly. We tend to work our abs, shortening and tightening those muscles but we don't work the corresponding back muscles that much which causes an imbalance and sets us up for this problem. And, of course, we aren't that careful of our posture when we're on the computer or reading. I hear echoes of my mother saying "Sit up straight." and me thinking she's just being bossy.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • no profile photo 921011
    I've got the same problem standing a long time when shopping or in the kitchen doing lots of food prep work. I saw a video that explained lower back problems could result from tight hamstrings and stretching them out for about several minutes a day may help. And too much time at the computer and slouching doesn't help matters either. I love lying on the floor with a tennis or baseball under my upper back and rolling on the tight knots for relief. Deep tissue massages works great too. My chiro says yoga would be beneficial but I haven't made an effort to do it but I should.
    1055 days ago
  • HOLLI64
    My back has been acting up lately too, so I'm doing lots of stretches and trying to walk as much as possible. Standing for any length of time, even just to do a few dishes, is torture. It's gradually getting better, and I know it's not forever, so I'll just do what I can until then.

    emoticon
    1097 days ago
  • MKBWNSUGAR
    Feel better soon, emoticon
    1550 days ago
  • SUEPERWOMANSUE

    I hope your back is feeling better by now... one of the stretches I do for my lower back issue, as per my physical therapist, is called cat-cow. Look it up- it's a classic yoga pose.
    1558 days ago
  • LIZSPRINGSTEEN
    emoticon
    1563 days ago
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