Chronic Non Specific Low Back Pain And Exercise

I was recently reading the article titled “Chronic Non Specific Low Back Pain and Exercise” that was published in the strength and conditioning journal in 2013 and thought I would summarise the key take home messages.  As osteopaths we are regularly dealing with clients who present with chronic non specific low back pain and as part of our treatment and management strategies, exercise prescription is often a big part of helping the client treat and manage their condition.

Key Messages

  • Chronic non specific low back pain can be defined as muscle tension, pain, stiffness +/- leg pain in the lower back region.
  • Individuals suffering with chronic non specific lower back pain will often suffer low back flare ups, lost time at wok, decreased quality of life, reduced neuromuscular function, decreased fitness and function as well as perhaps developing fear avoidance behaviours.
  • Exercise has been shown to be effective in increasing ones tolerance to pain and improving ones fitness and strength.
  • Individuals with chronic non specific lower back pain have been shown to benefit greater from supervised individualised exercise programs over a home based exercise program.
  • Exercise including aerobic conditioning and resistance training has been shown to be beneficial.
  • Assuming the individual has been cleared medically to exercise, guidelines suggest those suffering from non specific chronic lower back pain should aim to be active and avoid being sedentary as much as possible.
  • Exercise goals are often focused on increasing ones health and wellbeing, tolerance to exercise and ones overall physical function.
  • If an individual is currently in a state of de conditioning, the exercise program should progress slowly with regards to volume and intensity.
  • Exercise programs should be individualised and exercise selection should be based on the individuals ability to tolerate it.

At Principle Four Osteopathy we take an active management approach to our clients suffering from chronic lower back pain.   If you would like to find out more about how we treat and manage back pain, please contact us at

This blog was written by Osteopath Heath Williams of Principle Four Osteopathy.


Principle Four Osteopathy

Principle Four Osteopathy is one of Melbourne City CBD leading Osteopathy clinics. At the clinic we treat a wide range of clients, ranging from the office worker, exercise enthusiast to athlete. We have 3 experienced osteopaths working across both of the clinics.

The Melbourne City CBD clinic is located at 29 Somerset Place (basement), close to the corner of Elizabeth St and Little Bourke in the Melbourne City CBD. Our premises adjoin the Jon Weller Personal Training Studio, a fully-equipped training space which allows clients to combine their osteopathy treatment with exercise tutorials or specific training programs and rehabilitation.

The Docklands clinic is located at 717 Bourke St (Ground Floor), beneath the Channel 9 building near the walkway from Southern Cross Train Station to Etihad Stadium. Our premises adjoin Pilates on Bourke, a fully-equipped pilates and yoga training space which allows clients to combine their osteopathy treatment with exercise tutorials, pilates or specific training programs and rehabilitation.

To speak to an Osteopath or book an appointment at Principle Four Osteopathy, please book online or call 03 9670 9290.

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