Running can be beneficial for your back pain. It can strengthen the spine and help in managing or preventing back pain. According to a study, people who regularly run or walk have healthier discs in their spine than those who are not active.
Strengthening the spine :- A study conducted at Deakin University in Australia involved 79 participants and its findings challenge popular beliefs about the benefits of running to the spine. It was found that discs were strengthened by running.
As discs regenerate at a slower rate than other tissues, it was believed they didn’t respond quickly to exercise and due to the tissue’s nature, regeneration could not occur within the human lifespan. The study also reveals that exercises like walking and climbing stairs were found to strengthen the discs in a similar way. Runners also have lower rates of degeneration or arthritis.
The less stress you put on your bones, the less dense they become. Running also increases bone density because of the constant, repetitive shock it causes to the bones.
For those who can’t run due to back pain, even brisk walking has significant benefits for spine health. If you have back pain, consult our specialist before starting an exercise program.
Better discs :- The researchers found that the disks of the runners were larger and held more fluid than the discs of the non-runners, indicating more flexibility and less pain. The findings provide support for the theory that particular exercises may improve disk fluid and are the first instance in which exercise can benefit the spinal disks in humans.
Start Early :- A lifestyle component of regular exercise is beneficial for people of all ages, but starting in the teens and early 30s has the greatest effect on spine health. Older people can also benefit from exercise. Exercises like walking improve spine health by protecting the intervertebral discs’ structural integrity. But if the spine has a structural problem, stresses to the spine may worsen symptoms. In that case, visit Specialty Care Clinics for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Keep your body moving :- Sometimes we sit or stand in one position for too long while working. Because the nature of the body is dynamic, static situations are stressful for it. Provide your body with healthy movements that are supportive of the health of your spine.
Running is a high-impact exercise. The faster you are, your foot strike will be more forceful, which can put a lot of stress on your spine. Find a different option if you have chronic back pain.
There are ways to improve in a running program while taking care of your back if you experience mechanical back pain.
Stretch before and after running :- Stretch before and after running as it can be beneficial even for those who have back pain. You can try hamstring and quadriceps stretches. Also, stretching calf muscles affect pelvic tilt and low back tightness. The calf muscles do not directly connect, but the body works as a whole as a kinetic chain. It is important to have strong legs, buttocks, and abdominal muscles to help support your back. If your core is not strong, you are at risk of creating a muscle imbalance.
Aerobic exercises may help warm the body before running. Prior to a run, even a few minutes of yoga can help to ease up the back muscles, increase blood flow, and prepare the body for action.
Warm-up exercises are intended to increase blood flow and give muscles time to adjust to the motion of running. Cool-down activity after running can help the body in adjusting to less intense exercise. You may reverse the workout by gradually reducing the speed of a run until walking for two to three minutes. Cooling down muscles removes toxic metabolic breakdown products and prevents soreness. Apply an ice pack on your back after post-run stretches.
Slow and steady :- Set reasonable goals if you are a new runner. Slowly increase your distance and speed. It is a good practice to relieve stress on your spine.
Cross-training :- Swimming, riding, or lifting weights are all examples of cross-training. While running, change your speed, distance, and running workout to avoid overuse injuries. Take rest between workouts.
Right gear :- Shoes, braces, and orthotics are important. By providing warmth and support, a neoprene back belt for the low back can help maintain low back flexibility. To reduce the force that moves from your feet to your other joints, try to run softer surfaces.
Pay attention to your body :- Take your time if an injury is flaring up. If you experience back pain mid-run, stop and stretch. If it doesn’t work, stop running for some time. Also, address the pain that disturbs your sleep.
Improve running form :- Running form can reduce the strain on the back and other running-related muscles.
- Maintaining a relaxed posture with the chest aimed outward.
- Developing a smooth strike from the mid-foot to the toes.
- Instead of taking long, bounding steps, use shorter, faster strides.
Running with poor form can cause long-term joint issues (hip, knee, and ankle) and significantly increase the stress on the back.