The topic of running and back pain is one of the questions often asked of us. As with any topic related to back pain, the answer is most always, “it depends.”
Of all the treatment options available for back pain, the best back pain advice for how to get rid of back pain are those where the advice includes activity.
Activity means, in most cases, maintaining your day to day routines such as work, household chores, and recreational activities. Medical research is crystal clear on the fact that back pain sufferers who recover the fastest are those that stay active.
Now, that being said, if you’re a runner, what about continuing your running activity following an episode of back pain? And, again, the answer is, “It depends”.
Having offered back pain advice to thousands of runners over the years, the best and fastest way to back pain relief is addressing the actual source of the problem. And, in most cases of back pain, the source of the problem has to do with imbalances in the muscular system resulting in alterations in the function of your spine.
These alterations of spinal function can result in increases in stress to the structures of the back that can be compounded with the repetitive pounding associated with running. In cases where severe sciatica pain is present, running may be impossible due to the increased tension on the sciatic nerve.
So, if you’re a runner and you’re experiencing back pain that is keeping you from “pounding the pavement”, we suggest you follow these simple steps:
- Determine where your symptoms are located
- Determine the underlying source of the problem
- Address the source with specific strengthening and stretching exercises
- Prevent the problem from returning with a specific maintenance program
By following theses instructions, you can alleviate many of the underlying causes of back pain without having to give up your running activities. Keep in mind, however, that if you’re experiencing severe pain in your back or down your legs or you begin to notice episodes of weakness in your legs, you may need to consult with your physician.
As with your engine light warning you of a potential problem with your car engine, likewise pain is simply a warning sign that something in your body needs attention. Most back pain is just our body’s way of asking for help. Give it what it needs and it will perform no matter what your age or activity level.
Need More Back Pain Relief Advice?
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