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Follow these tips to reduce your risk of lower-back pain

It’s important to work on your weaknesses to avoid imbalances in your body.

Image: Shutterstock/Artem Furman

LOWER-BACK PAIN WILL affect at least 80% of us at some stage in our lives.

It can be incredibly debilitating; affecting our quality of work, how we go about physical activity and even restricting our social lives.

It can affect those who are sedentary and those who are physically active.

Of course, you should always consult a doctor first to assess the injury. But if you are OK to train, you can help relieve the pain by doing the right exercises.

The most common issue I have to deal with is poor mobility and/or flexibility.

Many clients have a weak core, tight and inactive glutes and poor posture, which all lead to the lower-back being overworked.

From my experience, there are three reasons for this:


Doing too much of the same high-intensity training and not listening to your body.

This could be anything from cycling to and from work every day with poor posture, going to the gym and doing deadlifts when your glutes are tight and not working correctly, weight training with poor technique, sitting at a desk for far too long, or being on your feet all day in a position of over-extension.


Not spending enough time working on your glutes, midline and mobility.

Sometimes you need to stop doing the fancy training and  work on the areas that really need it.

But how do you know what needs work? I’ve mentioned before that you should find out early doors, using a trainer or even an online video tutorial, how to diagnose what areas in your body are tight, weak, inactive and vulnerable to injury.

The exercises in the video below are a great way to show people the areas they need to work on.

Source: Dominic Munnelly/YouTube


You can’t put fitness on dysfunction.”  – physical therapist, Gray Cook 

So what does that mean?

As we age we can develop poor movement patterns and tight areas in our body. Tight ankles, hip flexors, rounded shoulders, inactive glutes, constant over-extension, poor posture, tight lower-back; the list is endless.

And if you do nothing about it and continue to work in the gym and shy away from your weaknesses, over time this can lead to major issues.

Spend as much of your training time as you can working on the fundamentals. That’s the problem with the fitness industry as a whole. No one wants the basic stuff, everyone wants the complex, high-intensity workouts with quick results.

Use resistance bands, foam rollers, lacrosse balls and other mysofacial release drills to stay on top of it.

I suffer from lower-back issues now and then but I stay on top of things by targeting the area for 15 minutes a day, every day with this routine.

Here is my routine:

Source: David Last/YouTube

Let me finish by saying that I’m not a trained physio nor any other type of medical professional.

I’m a trainer who sees clients with lower-back tightness/pain when they come in first and I’ve found that the mobility drills that I’ve given you here are useful to myself and my clients.

Thanks for reading.

David Last is a personal trainer based in Dublin, for more information you can follow him on FacebookInstagram and Twitter

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About the author:

David Last

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