About a month ago I wrote about The £1 Billion Back Pain Question and the relation of back and neck pain to muscle imbalances.
Unfortunately muscle imbalances are the cause of most of these pains.
And a lot of people have suffered from some form of back or neck pain right because of them.
So this article is to simply explain how muscle imbalance usually starts and what you can do to prevent it.
And we will particularly touch on the muscle imbalance of a hip joint connected directly to lower back pain.
Why Is Your Lower Back Hurting?
Tennis, football, golf, lifting something from the floor or lifting your kids up, there are a lot of situations that can spur the pain in your lower back that’s been waiting for you for months or even years.
But it’s not these movements that cause the pain.
Lower back pain is usually almost exclusively linked to some muscle imbalance in your hip joint.
Some of your muscle get weaker than their counterparts.
Some of the muscle get tighter.
So the movement that gets you the injury is almost always just the tip of the iceberg.
What’s the problem?
Hamstrings And Hip Flexors
In most cases they get tight.
You either never stretch them after exercise or they get tight as a result of your sedentary lifestyle and inactivity.
When you’re standing, both hamstrings and hip flexors keep their full length.
But the moment you sit down they shorten.
And if you stay in that position for long periods of time, they get tight eventually.
Glutes, Core and Abs
These muscle get weak.
Usually because they’re underused and undertrained.
And even if you train, it’s really easy to get them out of balance with their counterparts.
Runners and cyclists normally strengthen their quads and lower back a lot more than their glutes due to nature of the sport.
And that only adds oil to the fire. Why?
The Position Of Your Hips And Muscle Overuse
Because when your hamstrings and hip flexors get tight and your abs and glutes weak, the position of your hips changes creating what’s called lumbar lordosis.
And it is this position and your changed muscle recruitment pattern that get you in trouble.
The trouble comes when you bend over.
Instead of fully completing the movement through your hips, you bend through your back due to your tight hamstrings, instead of using your glutes and abs, you use your lower back to do it and if the back muscle is more tired than bearable it’s very easy to pull it.
So you walk around for 4-6 weeks with a minor pain in your lower back not being able to do things 100%.
And when it goes away, the underlying issue stays with you and so you’re prone to another episode of lower back pain.
How To Correct The Imbalance
The only way to fix this once and for all is to stretch your hamstrings and hip flexors and strengthen your abs and glutes.
And it’s absolutely doable if you’re consistent and do it at the end of your normal workouts.
If you’re suffering from lower back pain or think you might have a muscle imbalance, systematic exercise is the way to go but remember to always consult a professional.