Pivot with care

Pivot with care

A  common concern among all human beings, irrespective of age, gender and race, is a lower back ache.

The lower back is one of the most expressive regions of our body and many symptoms surface in this region. Starting from mechanical loading because of prolonged sitting, pregnancy, wrong lifting of weight, long drives, strenuous kitchen work, etc. In all the above-mentioned activities, the commonly-strained part of the body is the back. Why is this so?

The lumbar spine possesses the most freedom of mobility compared to any other part of the spine. It is also the centre of gravity of the entire body as it lies close to the S1 level of the spine. Hence, the lower back acts as the ‘pivot point’ for the entire body. Any movement in extremities would always get its anchor point from the lumbar spine.

The lower back is one point in the body which is mostly used in movement and force generation. But just because so much stress and strain traverses the lumbar spine doesn’t mean it is naturally weak. Nature has designed the body in such a way that it has given the area a huge group of muscles which work in combination to support the lumbar spine, making it the only part of the body which has an enormous support system.

This group of muscles is called the core muscles, otherwise labelled the natural corset. They include superficial and deep core muscles. These muscles cover the front part of the abdomen (abdominals), the low back extensors and the side trunk muscles.
For a healthy low back, three things are essential to ensure it is properly maintained. Movement (in the form of exercise), flexibility (in the form of stretches or yogasanas) and strength (in the form of resistance training).

If your work involves sitting for long hours at a stretch, take regular breaks from sitting and indulge in some good stretches which just requires a space beside your table. Maintaining any posture for a prolonged period of time puts the disc at risk. A change of posture is very much essential for all professionals.

I would vote for the yogic principle saying “spine is life” because the lower back acts as a pivot as I said, and any discomfort which is not dealt with would eventually not allow the person to be comfortable doing any activity. Kill the pain before it kills your health. Start exercising now because exercise is medicine and exercising is an attitude. Let that be our prime attitude.

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