Lessons about low back pain (part one)

I had the pleasure of spending two days at a Dr. Stuart McGill seminar about “Building the Ultimate Back”. Dr. McGill is a spine biomechanist at the University of Waterloo, an internationally renowned speaker about low back dysfunction, an equally renowned clinician, and the author of Low back Disorders and Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance.

Because Dr. McGill covered so much amazing information, and because back function is such an important topic, I have split this into three articles. This first article provides what I view as the 4 basic points he addressed.

Continue reading Lessons about low back pain (part one)

Don’t forget nutrition

Time Magazine recently published an article that concluded exercise does not help with weight loss.  That’s’ not entirely true, but nor is it entirely false: When it comes to weight loss, food is a bigger factor than exercise.

I am not saying don’t exercise.  Quite the opposite.  Exercise is crucial to living a long and happy life.  If done properly, it can improve your mood, reduce back pain, increase self-esteem, improve your heart health, and help you to maintain strong bones and muscles as you age so that you can be one of those people who are still skiing and running in their 80s.  I know I want to be one of those people.

Let’s not forget nutrition though.  One of the most renowned experts in the field of sports nutrition is Dr. John Berardi, who has done great work in helping us understand the importance of what and when we should eat.

Continue reading Don’t forget nutrition

If I could suggest 3 things…

I recently talked to someone who gets recurrent low back pain.  I tried to engage them in a conversation about strength and stability training, but was politely brushed off with a “I know what I need to do – I need to strengthen my abs”.  A while later, I wished I had made one quick suggestion: “stretch your hip flexors”

Why hip flexors for low-back pain?   Continue reading If I could suggest 3 things…