FREAKY SNEAKY INJURIES PART 2: Back



Confronting the Terrors of Back Injuries

Maria Sollon, MS, CSCS, PES

🎃🕷️👻 💀🧟‍♂️ 🦴

Injuries can be as terrifying as a monster that pops up when you least expect it. Many times the possibility of getting injured lurks around you unknowingly and silently until it suddenly strikes. So get ready for a hair-raising, 3-part journey into the realm of injury prevention.

FREAKY SNEAKY INJURIES: SERIES OVERVIEW

This three-part series is all about keeping your body strong and injury-free by warding off the haunting horrors of unwanted injuries! The series is divided into three parts to discuss different areas of the body that are most susceptible to certain injures. It’s important to know about common injuries, how they could sneak up on your muscles, and how to prevent them from occurring.

Here’s the Freaky Sneaky Series line up:
Part 1: Shoulders (Unveiling the Secrets of Shoulder Injury Prevention)
Part 2: Back (Confronting the Terrors of Back Injuries)
Part 3: Hips (Haunting Hip Injuries)

This is Part 2 in the series. If you missed part 1, don’t be scared to check it out too! Now let’s get on with injuries that could set you “back!”

COMMON BACK INJURIES

The spine, the very backbone of your body, hides its own sinister secrets. These are your allies in the battle against spine-chilling back injuries. In musculoskeletal health, understanding the most common back injuries and the importance of strength and mobility exercises is your best defense.

Three menacing back injuries that frequently strike unsuspecting victims are:
1. Herniated Disc (Disc Herniation): This spine-tingling condition occurs when the soft inner core of an intervertebral disc protrudes through the tough outer layer. It can result from improper lifting, bending, or chronic wear and tear. A herniated disc can lead to excruciating pain and even nerve compression, causing weakness and numbness.

2. Muscle Strain: The back is riddled with muscles, and even the strongest can succumb to strain. Overstretching or overuse can lead to muscle strains, causing pain, stiffness, and limited mobility.

3. Spinal Stenosis: Imagine your spinal canal as a dark corridor. Spinal stenosis occurs when this corridor narrows, often due to age-related changes. This condition can lead to back pain, tingling, and numbness in the limbs, as well as difficulty walking.

BACK INJURY PREVENTION

There’s no question of the importance of maintaining strength and mobility for the back and spinal muscles. Regularly performing specific exercises for your spine act as your protective spell against the malevolent forces of back injuries.
Core focused strengthening exercises work to fortify your back and spinal muscles, making them more resilient and capable of handling the stresses of daily life. By engaging in these exercises, you build a fortress of strong muscles around your spine, reducing the risk of injury.
Mobility movements ensure that your back maintains its range of motion and flexibility. This flexibility acts as a shield against stiffness and immobility, which can lead to strains and other back injuries.
By incorporating strength and mobility exercises into your routine, you empower your back to withstand the challenges of daily life. These exercises increase your core strength, protect your spine, and promote better posture. The benefits are numerous, from reduced risk of injury to improved balance, alignment, and overall musculoskeletal health.

BACK EXERCISES

The Total Gym shines as your ultimate companion to avoid the spine-chilling world of back injuries by offering a range of exercises to keep your spinal muscles strong, stable, and mobile. It’s an excellent source to ensure you're prepared to tackle daily activities with confidence and avoid the haunting specter of back injuries.

Remember, the path to a resilient, injury-free back is lit by the torch of strength and mobility exercises.

Directions: Learn and practice the following exercises slowly with control and proper form. The focus should be emphasized on developing the smaller muscles around the joints. Take your time and utilize your inner strength.

Reps + Sets: aim for 10 reps, sets depends on workout timing
Frequency: 3-4 days / week along with your other routines
Tempo: slow and controlled speed

1. Strength: Superman
• Facing the vertical column, lie prone on the glide board with chest at the top, legs extended, and cables in hands. Extend your arms forward, keeping them parallel to the floor. Simultaneously lift your chest and legs as the arms sweep back to a “Superman”. Hold this position for a moment, then release to repeat.
• Maintain proper form throughout the exercise and focus on engaging your back muscles to strengthen them effectively.

2. Mobility: Opposition Arm & Leg
• Face the vertical column, with both cables in hands. Anchor down to the glide board and assume a quadruped position. Simultaneously, extend one arm straight out to the front and extend the opposite leg straight back. Slowly with control, bring the knee and elbow towards each other while maintaining a neutral spine and even hips. Return to the starting position to repeat. Perform the set up and execution on both sides.
• Focus on maintaining balance and core control throughout the exercise.

3. Flexibility: Supine Twist + Forward Fold
• Supine Twist: Assume a comfortable supine position on the glide board with the head towards the vertical column. Hug both knees into chest, then release one straight while keeping the other knee bent and close to chest. Guide the bent across the body and aiming towards the floor by rotating the torso. Open the arms to each side to feel a deeper stretch. Slowly bring the knee back into the chest to reset and repeat on the other side.
• Forward Fold: Assume a seated position with legs extended down the glide board. Engage core as you fold over the extended legs.
• Perform these stretches in a flowing sequence and move into different angles of the stretch to accommodate your flexibility.

Check out the video demonstration to see how these Freaky Sneaky exercises are performed on your Total Gym.

Beware, Total Gym Movers! There’s more exercises lurking that will help you prevent other injury prone areas. Part-3 uncovers the horrors of hip injuries. Stay tuned…

Stay Spooky Strong! 🎃

Maria

Maria Sollon

Maria Sollon Scally MS, CSCS holds a Master’s Degree in Performance Enhancement/Injury Prevention and Kinesiology. She has obtained numerous certifications in various areas of fitness and is a national conference presenter. Maria specializes in Pilates, Performance Coaching, and Corrective Exercise Techniques and Kettlebells. She is the creator of the Plyo Pilates Method and has developed a series of amazing workout DVDs. She is a Master Trainer for Total Gym, Resist-a-Ball, Body Blade, Peak Pilates, Kettle Bell Concepts and is a freelance writer for Fitness accredited magazines, newsletters, and fitness blog sites. Maria demonstrates her knowledge each day and uses her dynamic creativity throughout her specialized line of work.http://www.groovysweat.com http://www.groovysweatstore.com (purchasable workout videos) http://www.youtube.com/groovysweat (workout clips)

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