Spine Health

I was recently reading Stuart McGill’s new book titled “Back Mechanic” which was written for the everyday person and I really appreciated many of the simple tips and strategies that he has written about for the average person with back pain or for those wanting to avoid future episodes of back pain.  Many of the tips that he writes about in his book are very similar to those that we often recommend as osteopaths when working with a client with back pain.  Some of my favourite spine health tips  include:

  • Employ a variety of postures throughout your day and be mindful of not being static or being in awkward postures for prolonged periods of time.
  • Select postures that you feel reduce the load on your body when standing, pushing, pulling, lifting and carrying i.e. keep your hands and objects as close to you as possible to reduce the leverage effect.
  • When performing manual tasks, manual handle smarter by minimising the need to lift the full load or look to perform the task over multiple lifts rather than one heavy lift.
  • Use hinge and squat movement patterns with a neutral spine when performing lifting patters etc so to minimise stress and strain through the lower back.
  • Let your body warm up and get ready for activity or exercise after sitting or stooping for prolonged periods of time.  The same can be said for when rising in the morning.  Slowly let your body warm up and get ready for the day before going into any activity that is strenuous.
  • When manual handling, look to minimise bending and twisting movements of the spine and look to move your feet and use your hips.
  • Ensure you have and adopt regular breaks when performing manual tasks  or activity for prolonged times (>30 minute block or 2 hours over the day).
  • Maintain healthy fitness levels (both aerobic and strength/endurance).

This blog post was written by osteopath Heath Williams of 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.