When you reach a certain age, let’s say 50 years old, most people have a “back” story to tell, like the story of how you threw your back out while tying your shoe. I have heard many stories of how someone bent over while sneezing, their back locked up, and they were stuck. Before you reach the age of 50 years old, you most likely have had something happen that has affected your back. Maybe the story is a little more exciting, like sliding down a ski hill and crashing into a tree!
My part of my back story consists of two bulging discs. I hadn’t had a back problem until February of 2014, when I fell on the ice and landed on my shoulder and hip. I didn’t notice the back issue at the time, because I had messed up my shoulder badly. Fast-forwarding six months, I was sleeping in a recliner chair to ease the pressure on my shoulder (which was recovering from recent surgery). During that time, I started to have pain and numbness in my leg and foot. After an MRI, we discovered the bulging discs. I started physical therapy and worked hard at strengthening my back.
Progressive resistance training to strengthen back muscles, kept the bulges from hitting my sciatic nerve. Strengthening your back and core will help to minimize injury, and keep an existing injury from getting worse. I can also say that regular chiropractic care and acupuncture have kept my pain and numbness manageable.
Movement is one of the most important keys to keeping everything working well. The worst thing that a person with a back injury could do is sit around. Of course, everyone’s situation is different, but most doctors would say to keep moving. Just walking every day can minimize your pain. Do you have a “Back” story?
Holly Kouvo is a certified Personal Trainer, Nutrition Specialist, Senior Fitness Specialist, Functional Aging Specialist, speaker and writer.