PDA

View Full Version : Lower back spasms



Cold War Scout
10-12-2006, 03:07 PM
http://www.sportsinjurybulletin.com/archive/1090-lower-back-spams.htm

I am now about to close out week 3 being seriously shut down by lower back spasms. I have never been laid up like this before. I highly recommend you guys take a look at this article and train in such a way as to prevent this from ever happening to you. You do not want any part of this, trust me.

michael
10-12-2006, 03:29 PM
BTDT, GTTS.

Mine hit me almost 10 years ago now, putting me on the floor and out of commission for several weeks. I couldn't do anything when it hit. Went to the doc, and found I had 2 discs that were degenerated and almost non-existent.

Mine is actually better now than it was for the first few years, but I really have to watch what I do. When I overdo it, I am in for weeks of pain from a couple of hours work. It really sucks.:mad:

If you don't have one, get an inversion table. It does more for my low back than anything else I've tried. I went the chiro route, vax-d and everything short of surgery, and nothing worked. The inversion table works the best. Mine is made by "Hang-ups", and I bought it from HSN. It was about 300.00, and is worth every penny.

tbird
10-12-2006, 03:35 PM
Scout,

I feel for you. I used to get back pain so bad I couldn't get out of bed. I went to regualr doctors and they didn't help. One even made it worse.

I suggest you find a good chiropractor. The problem is finding a good one. There are plenty of con-man chiropractors out there. But if you find a good one they are worth their weight in gold.

The best suggestion I can give to tell good from bad is watch how often you have to go back. Of course this will depend on your condition. But if you have to go back more than a couple times without noticing a sugnificant difference, find another chiropractor.

Hope this helps!
TBird

Marc "Crafty Dog" Denny
10-12-2006, 04:07 PM
Woof CWS:

Based upon more experience than you would like to hear about, my layman's
long-distance sight unseen assessment is this:

Most of the recommended exercises on the URL below are clueless (all of
those which bring knees up) The problem I suspect is that your hip flexors
are extremely tight. This causes the hips to tilt forward, which raises the
crest of the pelvis up towards the ribs. The discs are compressed, the
quadrates lumborum and spinal erectors shortened etc etc. This is when the
back spasms.
THE COMPRESSION OF THE DISCS IS CAUSED BY THE TIGHT HIP FLEXORS: Psoas, ilio
(together the two are sometimes known as the ilio-psoas.) and secondarily
the quads, which also cross the hip joint. Look at an anatomy chart to get
clear on where all of these are.

DEEP PRINCIPLE: Where a muscle is tight, IN THAT RANGE OF MOTION the
complementary muscle (a.k.a. by people who express things negatively as the
"opposing muscle") is not firing well. In this case, the head of the
hamstring that crosses the hip joint and the glute.

DEEP PRINCIPLE: When muscles fire, complementary muscles release.

SOLUTION: Fire complementary muscles IN THE POSITION OF PEAK CONTRACTION
while stretching the tight muscle.

In your case, I suggest the following. Remember to ease into this and,
unlike what you did to create this, listen to your body. Unlike what you
did to create this, DO YOUR BEST, NOT YOUR MOST. A state of relaxed
awareness is best.

Lie face down. Extend arms to 1200. OK to turn head to side. Change
sides occasionally. Develop slow, deep powerful breathing. MAINTAIN THIS
BREATHING THROUGHOUT WHAT FOLLOWS. Good. Squeeze ankles and knees
together, to extent possible draw up into perineum (between anus and
genitals) Now squeeze glutes hard into peak contraction and hold. KEEP
BREATHING AT ALL TIMES. Imagine squeezing out last drops of an ejaculation.
Now draw arms towards you so as to generate isometric activity along front
of body i.e. as if pulling yourself forward with your forearms.

IF LOWER BACK FEELS BAD PRESSURE, BEND ONE HIP 90 DEGREES OUT TO THE SIDE
(KNEE BENDS 90 DEGREES TOO). THIS WILL ISOLATE THE WORK ON ONE HIP AT A
TIME AND LESSEN PRESSURE ON LOWER BACK. FROM THE SOUND OF THINGS, YOU MAY
NEED TO DO THIS. THESE THINGS CANNOT BE FORCED.

Your forearms should be parallel. Naturally your upper body is rising (into
what yoga calls "the sphinx") Ideally your elbows should arrive to directly
beneath your shoulders, but if you need to stop before that, that is fine.
Remember, do your best, not your most. With the ankles/knees pressing and
glutes thrusting the hips into the floor and the forearms pulling (REMEMBER,
KEEP BREATHING) you should be feeling a pulling/lengthening in the front of
the hips/lower abs. This is your psoas and ilio. THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT WE
ARE LOOKING FOR. Focus your relaxed awareness on generating this feeling.
DO YOUR BEST, NOT YOUR MOST. Take you time. Relaxed awareness! You may be
working on this for 2 minutes or 60 minutes. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY.

The key: Peak contraction of glute provides foundation from which to
pull/lengthen the hip flexors.

If my diagnosis is correct and you understand what I intend to communicate
here correctly and do it, then there should be a fairly dramatic
diminishment of pain. This is the first exercise in the progression, but
from the sound of it, it is all that should be working your way into right
now.

SEPARATE and/or ADDITIONAL POINT: If you have access to a good Chinese
Doctor, do acupuncture and herbs.

ALL RISKS ARE YOURS, blah blah.

TAC,
CD

Cold War Scout
10-12-2006, 04:39 PM
My idiotic story:

Ironically (because some of what I will say mirrors things in the article) on Sept. 21, I did 3 things that led me to have a sore lower back on Friday morning Sept. 22:

1) packing and moving around heavy bins;
2) 40 lb. weight vest hill climb 10X (notice this link's mention of uphill training);
3) sleeping on different mattress for first time.

Nonetheless on morning of Sept. 22 I went and did Olympic lifting. I had to stop midway through when 3 dead lifts at only 185 were too painful (I can usually do 315). I should have stopped when the snatches were very painful (I did them first).

Nonetheless again, the next day Sept. 23 I did 16 sets of dumbbell thrusters...with lighter weights than usual because my back was hurting.

And further nonetheless on Sept. 24 I did 100 burpees, despite the fact my back still hurt.

On Sept. 25 when I woke up it felt like my lower back muscles had clenched up completely and locked down. My doctor said "it's like a diesel car in North Dakota (presumably in dead winter). It will keep running, but when you shut it down it ain't gonna start up again...and that's what your back did. It got tired of waiting for you to be sensible so it went ahead and did the job for you."

michael
10-12-2006, 04:41 PM
Good stuff Marc.

I know you are fond of Yoga, have you found that has helped your back? How often do you do it, and what program do you follow?

Cold War Scout
10-12-2006, 04:59 PM
Good stuff Marc.

I know you are fond of Yoga, have you found that has helped your back? How often do you do it, and what program do you follow?

When I put this behind me I am going to start doing more yoga and range of motion training. Even before this event I was beginning to feel that I was trying to keep up a workout regimen that I simply could not keep up indefinitely. Not enough rest. Too much emphasis on weight training regimens. I pretty much had the following schedule that I was to obsessive/compulsive to alter:

Monday - kettlebell or Clubbell regimen
Tuesday - barbell and dumbbell for strength (could sometimes be a 2 1/2 hour workout)
Wednesday - cardio with weight vest
Thursday - weight vest/ankle weight/hand weight bodyweight routine
Friday - Olympic lifting
Saturday - dumbbell thrusters
Sunday- burpees with weight vest

This event will slow me down from that pace.

michael
10-12-2006, 05:27 PM
I need to seriously take up Yoga, at least a couple of days a week.

I've slowed WAY down over the last few years. My aches and pains are starting to get aches and pains.:eek:

I'm thinking about limiting my weight work to one day a week, and doing more bodyweight stuff, cardio and Yoga.

Surly
10-12-2006, 05:41 PM
Get a copy of Dr. Stuart McGill's book: Ultimate Back Fitness & Heath (www.backfitpro.com).

I can't recommend it highly enough. It's a text written for physiotherapists, but you guys are all smart enough to understand the material and the context. McGill is the head of the Department of Spinal Biomechanics at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

Check out these two interviews w/ McGill:

http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1011400

http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=270spine2

The Searcher
10-12-2006, 05:52 PM
I know several people who've really screwed up their backs by "driving on" through the pain and continuing to train.

This is one where being a tough guy is not helpful. :eek:

Jack Rumbaugh
10-12-2006, 06:36 PM
I have a double herniation at L4-5 so I feel your pain. If you have access to Flexeril, it really helps my back.

You'll have to slow way down for a few weeks. Theraball is your friend.

Call me if you need anything, amigo.

Jack

Agencyman
10-12-2006, 06:51 PM
I've had surgery to trim and cauterize L3-L4 discs that were ruptured! I have decided that some chiropractors are good alternative medicine folk, some are good D.O.'s, some on a level with M.D.'s, but few are neurosurgeons, so!:

Be sure your state requires that they have some knowledge of the human skeleton, and nervous system, before they have a shot at you. I have heard good stories, yes.

However, there are some dangerous ones out there, who have caused extreme and permanent damage with their "adjustments", and some who just want to fill out your therapy schedule card with enough dates to buy that XJ-S they've been wanting.

B.