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Mamluk
06-09-2015, 08:52 PM
Unfortunately many of us denizens of the modern world are plagued with issues like chronic pain, fatigue, sleeplessness, being overweight, being sedentary and a horrible diet. And each of these factors compounds the other, and it's up to each of us to break the cycle in our lives. Americans, in particular, are prone to taking too many medications and rely too heavily on pharmaceuticals to alleviate their pain, rather than making changes to their lifestyles. (Fortunately I haven't fallen into the pharmaceutical trap, and I only take a pill as a last resort.)

After being fed up with neck and back pain, and a partial fascination with a documentary I watched about centenarians around the world, a few years ago I made the decision to revert to a more Mediterranean-style diet, and to exercise 4-5x per week (I swim 40+ laps almost everyday), and that has helped me tremendously, but I still have to cope with residual effects of (occupation-induced) neck and back discomfort.

Then my brother sent me this interesting article from NPR yesterday: "Lost Posture." (http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2015/06/08/412314701/lost-posture-why-indigenous-cultures-dont-have-back-pain)

The author explains her theory as to why people from the under-developed world do not suffer from chronic pain issues the way we Americans do. She believes it is because they actually know how to stand, sit and walk properly, while we Americans have forgotten how to do that.

AJL
06-10-2015, 12:52 AM
^ I've had this problem for a while though it seems it's not so much a bad back as much as shortened hamstrings. Sitting for hours is murder on the hamstrings, so I try to stretch the legs as much as possible and it seems to help, but the main solution is limiting computer/desk time and moving as much as possible.

parasar
06-10-2015, 12:59 AM
http://www.howlandbolton.com/images/evolevol/0slouchcomputer.jpg
http://www.howlandbolton.com/essays/read_more.php?sid=331

AJL
06-10-2015, 01:46 AM
^ Funny, I just recently read a paper linking lumbar disc pain in humans to the structure of chimp spines!

rock hunter
06-10-2015, 01:19 PM
Genetics or good advertising

If you compare what some of our most recent ancestors
had to endure in terms of day to day physical labor
and discomforts . Compare the maladies of
today to that of baby boomers it would seem
we are either getting softer and softer genetically
or Madison Ave is making us all hypochondriacs .

Afshar
09-27-2015, 04:03 PM
^ I've had this problem for a while though it seems it's not so much a bad back as much as shortened hamstrings. Sitting for hours is murder on the hamstrings, so I try to stretch the legs as much as possible and it seems to help, but the main solution is limiting computer/desk time and moving as much as possible.
I also suffered from short hamstrings, couldnt reach below the knee :). Stretching a couple times a week resulted in touching my toes.
Ot
The backpain of this age is in my opinion the result of weak back muscle as a result of lazyness. Doing some back workouts once a week will help enormously (did for me).

DMXX
09-27-2015, 04:18 PM
For those with constant mid-back and shoulder aching, a quick pro-tip;

A couple times a week, grab a loaded barbell (start with 40kg's if female, 60kg's if male) with a supinated (palms pointed up) grip with your arms hanging straight down, stand tall, extend your thoracic spine (rotate it outwards in front of you, "puffed chest"), brace your core, squeeze your lower lat muscles down (as if you're tucking them into your back pockets), and finally squeeze your glutes ("hip thrusting" into the bar). In the mirror, it should appear as if you're just standing there with the bar. Maintain this for as long as you can for 2-3 sets.

This entire set-up is in effect reversing the negative effect countless hours of sitting hunched over on a desk causes. It's helped me massively relieve shoulder and thoracic spine aching, as well as strengthening grip. A physio taught me that last year.

Sangarius
09-27-2015, 04:42 PM
I suffer from lower back pain due to too much sitting infront of the pc. Not all lower back pain is due to a weak back, though. There are two conditions that can cause the pain, anterior pelvic tilt and posterior pelvic tilt:

http://darwinian-medicine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/postures.jpg

Anterior pelvic tilt, what I have, is caused by weak abdominals and hamstrings, and shortened back muscles and quadriceps. So strenghtening the back would make it worse. Instead it requires strengthening of the abs and hamstrings, and stretching of the back and quads. Vice versa for posterior pelvic tilt.

This is a good two part seris on the matter:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEn61BL4Nwk

DMXX
09-27-2015, 04:56 PM
Never thought I'd see Alan Thrall linked on Anthrogenica... :D He's an excellent resource.

Afshar
09-27-2015, 05:45 PM
Never thought I'd see Alan Thrall linked on Anthrogenica... :D He's an excellent resource.

If you want to get big Yes, his diet plans are superb :)

surbakhunWeesste
09-27-2015, 05:55 PM
http://darwinian-medicine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/postures.jpg



The Anterior Pelvic tilt reminds me of Nicki Minaj and some girls. Oh man! they must have a weak back. I always like to think that my posture is right but perhaps I am in between good posture and posterior pelvic tilt.

DMXX
09-27-2015, 06:06 PM
If you want to get big Yes, his diet plans are superb :)

Indeed. Although gaining mass with weight training's comparatively easy compared to, say, intelligent cutting or recompositioning.


The Anterior Pelvic tilt reminds me of Nicki Minaj and some girls. Oh man! they must have a weak back.

A lot of women do fan their backsides out in that Minaj-esque way for attraction purposes (the phrase "sexual posturing" satisfies two meanings here). It can be considered a "forced" form of APT, assuming it wasn't there to begin with. Unless corrected, they're in for a lifetime of lumbar-pelvic dysfunction... Particularly if they decide to have children.

Men are also victims of sexually-reasoned posture distortion as well. The "invisible lat syndrome" (not an actual clinical term, but a description for posture with chests puffed out as if a man's carrying boulders down the Hindu Kush) is usually accompanied by some internal shoulder rotation, which contributes massively to shoulder impingement (ergo pain).

People do silly things in the name of vanity.

Joe B
09-27-2015, 08:04 PM
I find that lat pulls straighten the spine and provide significant palliative benefits due to spinal disc decompression of the thoracic/lumbar region. Dips, without an assist, is another exercise that gives some decompression too. Although limited to weight machines, resistance training gives me a good dose of endorphines. That plus safe stretching in a yoga class is a good combination that deals with my titanium friends at L4-5. Aerobic exercising is tough for people with bad backs. Almost everything involves shocks to the spine from heel strikes or bad posture with bike riding or row machines. I've had the best luck with elliptical trainers because that eliminates the heel strike and improves posture because both the arms and legs are working simultaneously.

Arbogan
09-27-2015, 08:27 PM
Exercise definitely helped me with my back. Since I stopped slouching. Any back pain I had. Is pretty much gone. I think the more sitting a person does. The more strain you put on your back. There are two things i've learned so far. We are not designed to lift heavily and we're not designed to sit for an extended period of time.

DMXX
09-27-2015, 09:49 PM
Swimming decompresses the spine very well, also. Another option for the physically able are gravity boots (hanging upside down like a bat). I use those occasionally, though not for very long (to minimise the possibility of vessel rupture in the eyes). Another alternative is just hanging onto a bar with neutral grip and rotating one's hips gently.

The final addition to the list are inversion tables, which work just like gravity boots, but are much more practical for those who aren't strong enough to lift their legs over their heads.

icebreaker
09-27-2015, 10:42 PM
I don't have back pain i never had. Those are the two exercises i do everyday. I recommend them to everyone!


pushups: 100x or 200x


pullups: 2* 10x