The Functional Back

Back pain self-treatment featuring the Hubble Method

Why back pain makes it hurt to move (and 3 ways to control the pain)

You probably know that you’re supposed to keep moving to help your back pain. But here’s the problem: Movement hurts! There are 3 reasons for that, and 3 strategies to control it.

First, why does it hurt? One word: balance.

A review of studies on postural stability and low back pain confirms that when people with low back pain close their eyes, their balance is significantly worse than that of people without back pain. Their bodies sway and where they put pressure on their feet constantly moves. For example, when you have back pain, if you try standing with a Wii game console motion sensor attached to your feet with your eyes closed, the Wii will show you constantly moving around onscreen.

Other studies provide an explanation for this balance problem:

  1. When we have back pain, postural muscles are slow to switch on.
  2. When our low back muscles are in spasm, they aren’t stabilizing us.
  3. We compensate for #1 and #2 by holding our breath to recruit our diaphragm for stability.

Now, let’s add movement. When we brace our muscles and hold our breath, our bodies can’t adjust to slippery rocks, uneven pavement, or even changes in direction.

We may experience this phenomenon as low back tightness, a general feeling of stiffness, a shortened gait and slower speed, a tendency to gaze at our toes, clenching against any jarring movement, and a penchant for tripping and falling. All of these symptoms appear not because we’re moving, but because our lumbar spine and pelvis aren’t moving.

What is the solution? Get your low back and pelvis moving. There are three times during your day when encouraging movement is most important: when you first wake up, when you are preparing for exercise, and when you are moving during exercise.

TFB’s new Move It! Program promotes healthy movement and pain control during these critical times with 3 quick series of exercises:

  1. Wake-up exercises to complete before your feet hit the floor.
  2. Pre-exercise warm-ups to gently increase movement in your spine and pelvis.
  3. Mobility maintainers to use during exercise.

Here’s what you get:

  • 15 exercises
  • 26 exercise photos
  • 2 exercise videos (COMING SOON!)

**Special Offer**: Buy the PDF program at the introductory price, and get FREE online video access. We will notify you when the videos are available.

Learn more.