Back-problems know no age

Regardless of your age and whether you exercise or not, back-problems have troubled most, if not all of us, at one stage or another.  Often it is due to a lack of exercise, but it can also occur even though you are fit.  Poor posture plays a key role, as well as being overweight and emotional feelings.  Many holistic healers believe that feelings of guilt, financial concern, a lack of support (on all levels) and anxiety (stress), causes back pain.  Anxiety, for example, can cause digestive problems such as bloating and congestion (especially if it is ongoing), thus it leads to a slackness of muscles in that area.

Our spinal cord, which starts at the base of our skull, is a wonderful gift that supports not only our limbs, but protects our vital organs.  The spine is amazing:  it is not just firm, but it also supports and transmit force.  It has natural curves that acts as shock absorbers, thus protecting our brain, organs and neck.  It is an area with high mobility, yet little skeletal support to carry heavy loads.  Your entire body’s weight sits above the hips!  Therefore, your knees and hips are just as important to protect and strengthen, as any problems arising in one / both of these areas, can fuel back-problems.  Keeping our back muscles, as well as all the other muscles, strong, will not only support the skeletal system, but also protect it.  The stronger the muscles surrounding the bones are, the more support it gives to the skeletal system when you move, exercise, bend forward, run and the like. 

Apart from the abovementioned issues, being out of alignment can also cause back-issues.  When your head, for example, is too far forward, your upper back, together with your shoulders, pull forward and creates a curved upper back.  When you don’t stand or sit in an upright position with your shoulders back but in a relaxed position, your stomach protrudes forward and you “sit” on your lower back.  Often the buttocks are also pushed out, whilst the pelvic floor tilts down, instead of facing forward.  A hyper-arched lower back and collapsed lower back occur, because gravity gets stuck in the areas, instead of flowing through the body.  The same goes for the body’s energy, blood flow and oxygen.  When you sit in a hunched back position, for example, your lungs are “squashed” and breathing becomes restricted. 

Lower back problems can often stem from problems higher up; for example, rounded or tense shoulders can put strain on the spine.  If the lower back is compromised, then the shoulders and neck-area try to carry themselves, it can cause the neck and shoulders to become stiff and sore.  The weight of the shoulders is conducted down the spine and into the earth.  Therefore, it is very important to walk, sit and stand correctly.  When you come back to your natural alignment (where your shoulders are rolled back and down, your pelvis and hips face forward, your sitting bone is tucked under and your head is not pushed forward), then your body can relax, your shoulders feel supported and the tension disappears. 

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