Rocks and Low Back Pain: PART 2 – TPI Trainer, NYC


In part one of this 3 part series I discussed ergonomic and common biomechanical causes for low back pain. Part 2 continues with biomechanic causes and some common exercise no-nos.

Big Belly-Flat Butt Man

You’ve seen this guy….He’s everywhere. He’s as common as a housefly! Gut hanging out over his belt buckle and there isn’t enough ass to hold up his pants.

“Weakness of the abdominal wall results in an increase in the anterior rotary motion of the pelvis. The motion increases extension, and compressive loading of the lumbar facets.”Mechanical Low Back Pain, Porterfield, and DeRosa, p. 137

In other words, if your stomach sticks out like this guy’s, you’re likely to have low back pain. 

The Role Of The Abdominal Musculature 

The term ‘core’ is about as misunderstood a term in exercise as I can think of. The general population still thinks that crunches are core exercises!!

If you want to avoid back pain never do this exercise!

Crunches and sit-ups with your legs locked are amongst the worst exercises to do for your back!

The diagram above is of what is known as “the inner unit.” These muscles work together to help stabilize the spine.

During most activities, the primary role of the abdominal muscles is to provide isometric support and limit the degree of rotation of the trunk.

Remember the joint-by-joint model we discussed earlier. It’s the thoracic spine (the region that supports the rib cage) that’s the segment with the greatest rotational abilities.  The T-Spine can rotate as much as 45 degrees in each direction, whereas the overall rotation of the lumbar spine is approximately 13 degrees. So, once again, if we lose T-spine mobility we risk rotating from the wrong part of the spine, which leads to irritation and pain.

What About Non_Mechanical Causes Of LBP?

In the West, we tend to see pain as the problem and simply treat the site of pain.

“Pain never precedes dysfunction.” _ Stanley Paris

If your back hurts something is already wrong.

Additionally, as Westerners, we tend to think mechanically, not holistically. But everything isn’t as simple as it seems. The body is a synergistic system of systems. Meaning everything is connected. When I say everything I mean everything.! What you eat and how you think can also affect how you feel and function!

End Of Part 2