Back Safety

Most back problems are unnecessary and can be prevented with the proper training and education. Your spine has three purposes:

  1. Maintain the structure of our trunk and allow for body mobility.
  2. Protect the spinal cord.
  3. Act as a shock absorber.

The components of the spine include the vertebral body, disk (fibrous ring, jelly substance middle and shock absorber), facet joints, tendons, and nerves.

What causes back problems?

  • Poor posture
    • Slumped sitting
    • Flat back
    • Sway back
  • Faulty body mechanics
    • Lifting with the back flexed
    • Knees in the way
    • Twisting without a pivot
    • Weight too far away
  • Stressful living and working habits
    • Work too low and far away
    • Reaching with a heavy load
    • Back unsupported
  • Poor mattresses
    • A mattress which is too hard leaves the back unsupported
    • A sagging mattress leaves the back in an unbalanced position
  • Other risk factors
    • Accidents
    • Loss of flexibility
    • Decline of physical fitness

Types of back problems

  • Disc strain or bulge
  • Herniated disc
  • Acute strains and sprains
  • Postural strains and sprains
  • Joint stiffness
  • Osteoarthritis

What can you do to help your back?

  • Use good posture
  • When lifting heavy objects, do not lift with your back, but rather bend your legs
  • Interrupt or change stressful positions frequently

What are good preventative exercises for back problems?

  • Examples of aerobic exercises:
    • Swimming
    • Running or walking
    • Tennis
    • Biking