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the lower back quiz-are you destroying your back each day?

Posted by in Lower Back pain and your core |

The lower back pain quiz

True or False

Ok folks here we go. I am sure many of you reading this have a good idea of your lower back and what you should be doing for it and what you should be avoiding.

Right? Hmm, let’s see shall we. All of the questions below are to be answered either true or false and then I will give you the answers at the end. No cheating.

  1. You should do sit-ups to strengthen your core which will protect you back from injury.
  2. when  you do sit-ups you should have your knees bent to protect your back rather than having them straight
  3. its important to have a  strong back to protect it from injury
  4. its important to have excellent flexibility to have a pain free and stable back
  5. if you can build up enough stamina and are able to do 100 sit-ups per day you are going to have a better back than someone who can only do 10 a day
  6. you should do flexion exercises like touching your toes and bringing your knees to your chest  every day for a healthy flexible back
  7. the morning is the best time of the day to do these exercises
  8. if you have tight hamstrings this can lead to back problems
  9. unequal leg lengths are a common cause of back pain
  10. if you herniate a disc  the best exercises to relieve the pain and the disc bulge is generally bringing your knees to your chest gently
  11. to protect your back from injury, the best method is to build up the strength and get it as flexible as possible rather than build up the endurance capabilities of your back muscles
  12. if you injure your back, one of the best things you can do for it is to go to bed and rest it for a minimum of 12 hours so that it can recover
  13. if you have been driving in the car for a few hours with bad posture and then when you stop you need to lift a large heavy suitcase out of the trunk you should bend over and touch your toes several times to stretch out your back which will protect it from injury
  14. when  lifting something heavy, the best way to protect your back is to suck your stomach muscles inward towards your spine
  15. when lifting something heavy you should try to keep your stomach muscles as relaxed as possible to give them maximum power and therefore,  protection for your back

So let’s see how well you did. Of course it’s vitally important that you know these questions because if you don’t you are harming your back each and every day. Count how many answers you have that are true and how many are false.

Every answer you have that is false is correct and every answer that is true is incorrect. That’s right, every statement above is false!

You should never do sit-ups-never! It is harmful to your back and it doesn’t matter whether your legs are bent or straight, it still puts too much force on your lower back.

You back should be able to endure loads for long periods of time. It does not matter if you have great strength or flexibility. This does not guard against injury. Your back must have good endurance capabilities to withstand loads for extended periods of time. If you do not, when you get tired your muscles fatigue and are no longer supporting your spine which can lead to injury.

You should not be doing exercises that increase flexion in your spine bending forwards to touch your toes. The loads on you discs and ligaments are very harmful to your back. In the mornings your discs are swollen because they absorb liquid during the night. This increases pressure in your spine and in the first hour after you wake up you have a 300% greater risk of disc injury! Therefore doing flexion exercises in the morning is very high risk indeed. The have actually done studies where people who were doing toe touching, knees to chest type exercises each day and when they stopped doing these their lower back problem became much better just from stopping these exercises.

There is next to no evidence that tight hamstrings lead to back problems nor in the great majority of leg length differences.

The great majority of disc bulges are posterior and flexing forward will make it worse. This is why extension exercises are what you need to be doing to reduce the disc bulge, not flexion exercises like bringing your knees to your chest.

Studies have shown that lying in bed for more than eight hours is actually stressful to the back.

If you have been driving in a slouched position you have been pushing your disc backwards and a phenomenon called ‘creep’ occurs. Simply put, you need to be getting out of the car and do some back bending exercises to realign the disc in a more forward direction, not pushing it even further back by touching your toes. If you lift something poorly you are at great risk of damaging your lower back.

And finally, when you lift something apart from having your lower back straight and bending from the hips you should always perform abdominal bracing.

Abdominal bracing is contracting all of your core muscles to give your spine support. The sensation is very much like when someone goes to poke you in the stomach or ribs. You brace your muscles against it. You do not suck your muscles in nor do you push your stomach out. You simply tighten your muscles and no visible movement is occurring. This is abdominal bracing which should be done every time you lift something.

So there you have it!

More quizzes to come in the future