Low Back Pain is one of the most familiar physical afflictions experienced by Canadians, and an extremely common complaint of those seeking massage treatment.
For some a benign irritation, like a womans menstrual cramps. Others a serious condition, like chronic pain from spondylolithesis, requiring significant changes to ones daily life. Pain in this very mobile, transitional area (upper to lower body) can seem inevitable.
Caused by postural distortions, disc, sacroiliac and hip joint pathologies. By something insignificant as a few nights spent on a hotel bed, or helping your friend move into a new home. Low back pain is normal for many.
Whatever the cause of the pain, our initial instinct is to protect and avoid contact with the injured area, but be aware that the muscle guarding system can evolve into a pattern of immobilization and muscle weakness down the line. Properly administered massage therapy treatments are often successful. Staying appropriately active (by increasing body awareness, core strength, muscle flexibility) and receiving massage routinely are essential to improve back pain.
An effective massage therapy session for low back pain will include treatment to the abdominals, hip flexors, hamstrings, paraspinals, latissimus dorsi, quadatarus lumborum and the gluteals. An effective prevention program (re-evauluating body mechanics, postures, strength and flexibility) either self guided or with a professional (ie. Physical Therapist) will go a long way in decreasing reoccurring pain. Being consistent with both these approaches is key!
Suzanne Shynkaruk, RMT