Participating in sports takes a toll on the body. Athletes everywhere know the discomfort that comes with working out. Sore muscles and achy bodies help you know that your movement is doing something positive.
However, there is a fine line between soreness and pain. When it comes to your lower back in particular, distinguishing between the two is very important for maintaining good spine health. Slight soreness in the lower back may be normal if you’re beginning to work out more or have been doing new types of athletic motions, but a consistently-sore back or back wracked by sharp pains is not normal.
If you begin to feel low back pain during or after an athletic routine, stop exercising and take a moment to examine the pain you’re experiencing. If you aren’t sure whether the pain is cause for concern, schedule a meeting with a chiropractor to get to the bottom of the issue.
Ideal Spine helps chiropractors across the nation work with patients to discover and potentially relieve their back pain.
The link between athletics and low back pain
Athletes are at high risk of low back pain because of the frequency at which they run, twist and jump. All these movements put pressure on the spine and surrounding ligaments and muscles, leading to injury.
Specifically, repetitive twisting and turning can stress the muscles around the spine, making muscle sprains more common. Lots of running and jumping can wear down on the spinal vertebrae and the discs between them. And, sports that involve lots of impact such as football can even cause injuries to the spine, nerve roots and surrounding tissues.
Some of the most common back pain problems athletes face include muscle sprains, osteoarthritis, bulging discs and herniated discs. Injuries and fractures are less common but are still a risk.
If you are an athlete, watch for sharp pain that occurs with a specific movement, as well as pain that radiates down your legs or to other areas of the body. Additionally, achiness or stiffness that lasts longer than a day or two and does not ease with ice or anti-inflammatory drugs may be cause for concern.
Preventing and treating low back pain
Taking care of your body is a critical part of being an athlete. If you start to notice that your lower back hurts, do not ignore it. Many athletes try to “play through” the pain, when what they should be doing is taking a break from the game.
Ignoring low back pain may make your pain condition worse. Continuing to put pressure on your back may further any strains or fractures and prevent you from healing correctly. Additionally, you may begin to move in different ways to avoid or compensate for the pain, putting pressure in the wrong places and hurting yourself more.
Instead, pay attention to your pain. You may want to try ice and heat therapy at home to see if the pain eases. Rolling out muscles with a foam roller or lacrosse ball may also help if your back pain appears to be muscular.
However, if your back pain is sharp, shooting, or does not go away, don’t delay in visiting a chiropractor for diagnosis and treatment. A chiropractor will do x-rays and work with you to identify the root cause of your pain. Once a diagnosis has been reached they may be able to assist you in alleviating pain and getting you back in the game through stretches, physical exercises, and spinal manipulations.
Ideal Spine trains chiropractors nationally on our specialized approach to patient care, Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP). By visiting a CBP-trained professional, you may see improvement in your condition after even a few short sessions.
Chiropractic BioPhysics® corrective care trained Chiropractors are located throughout the United States and in several international locations. CBP providers have helped thousands of people throughout the world realign their spine back to health, and eliminate a source of chronic back pain, chronic neck pain, chronic headaches and migraines, fibromyalgia, and a wide range of other health conditions. If you are serious about your health and the health of your loved ones, contact a CBP trained provider today to see if you qualify for care. The exam and consultation are often FREE. See www.CBPpatient.com for providers in your area.