By Beth Ann Henning, Massage Therapist
In the two decades I have been a Massage Therapist, I have seen a lot of people dealing with back pain. Upper back, mid back, low back- you name it, I’ve seen it and assisted in the resolution. Quite often I am questioned as to the source. It varies from person to person; some sources are trauma such as a sport injury or auto accident. A source can be overuse, also from a sport or job. Other sources can be structure based- pregnancy, disc degeneration, nerve impingement, and the like. But in my estimation the most prominent reason for back pain, in any area, is body mechanics.
Slouching on the couch, hunching over the work computer, lounging too far back in the driver’s seat of the car, are just a few of the culprits. You just straightened your posture, didn’t you? 😉 How you move, your sleeping position, and the way you sit and stand al make a significant impact on your back and spine’s health, and therefore the health of your entire body! When I was young my mom always used to say to me “Sit on your butt, not your back.” I had no idea why it bothered her so much that I slouched on the couch. Fact of the matter is, I was undoing all the corrective work my chiropractor was doing… and contributing to a future of back pain.
As I have advanced in years and enjoyed my massage career, I have learned first hand the importance of spinal posture and good body mechanics. When I am sloppy in my body mechanics at the massage table, I hurt and ache. Knowing the result I will feel is enough to prompt a correction in my posture. This is what I stress to my patients when they seek answers and solutions. Be mindful of your body and its repetitive actions, the amount of time it is stuck in one position such as when sleeping and at your work station.
I can not stress enough being more conscious of yourself. But also the importance of using the ‘tools’ we have at the clinic: Chiropractic adjustments by the docs; Massage by any of our licensed therapists; some mobility, stretching and strengthening with our Personal Trainers; talking dietary supplements and change with our Nutritionist. The team at Woodbury Spine Wellness Center is here to treat the cause of your back (and other) pain and are excited to partner with you on your health journey!
We’ve got your back! Pay it forward and tell a friend to check their posture (or send them our way; we’ll help straighten them out too!)