10 Myths About Lower Back Pain (LBP)

One-Off

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It is the case.

Nothing works, but it doesn't address the root cause....and while I know you said yours was an impact injury, there are ways to heal quickly and improve your bodies defense to future injuries.

In the mid 90's I fractured two vertebrae in my lower back slamming into the reef. Doc said I was going to be dealing with it forever due to the soft tissue damage that was present as well (herniated discs from L3 through S1 with two sequestered fragments impinging on nerve roots. I gained 25 pounds and suffered through it for 10+ years following the doctors orders of ice and Motrin when it hurts, never lift anything heavy or run..... finally opting for surgery when there were more bad days than good and the sciatica in my right leg was so bad it felt like a had knives in it from thigh to foot. Through a lucky circumstance I had to cancel my back surgery to get my collarbone fixed and the surgeon mentioned a colleague of his that I should see before I get surgery. This was probably around 2012 or so. I've been pain free since. Sure ill get a little niggle from time to time but I know what it is and how to get through it in a matter of days, not weeks. In the meantime I've deadlifted just shy of 500 pounds and squatted over 400 after the age of 50. Take that doc. I will say that medicine and pain management has changed radically in the last 10-15 years and I doubt that doc would make the same recommendation today. I tried a lot of different things similar to what you posted and it just passed the time between flareups. The human musculoskeletal system is fairly simple in the way it works and it doesn't require a bunch of random movements and positions to work correctly. Muscle fibers contract one way at a speed gifted to you by genetics.......you can't change it and aside from a serious neurological issue you don't have trouble with them "firing" or "activating". They don't need weird angles or balancing acts to work.

I don't know your specifics or your age but when you go through an injury like yours a lot of times if you don't make changes it can mess with you forever.
Damn VM- when having to have surgery on your collarbone is considered a lucky circumstance! Ouch!

Was the surgeon's colleague one of your partners? MD? Trainer? What did he do? I'm guessing weight training.?
 

VonMeister

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Damn VM- when having to have surgery on your collarbone is considered a lucky circumstance! Ouch!

Was the surgeon's colleague one of your partners? MD? Trainer? What did he do? I'm guessing weight training.?
Yes a Dr, but not a partner.... but he practiced along the same track.

Yes, strength training focused on general strength and conditioning...not specific body parts.

It was a Thursday and I signed the waivers in the neurosurgeons office saying I couldn't sue him if I was paralyzed and said, what the hell, if im going to be paralyzed Monday I'll mountain bike one more time. Got home and took a handful of Vicodin to get me through the pain and heading up a trail. On the way down my favorite trail I crashed and broke my collarbone. I needed surgery on it right away so I got it done on Monday instead. I think all the trazodone they hit you with via IV during and after the surgery did a number on the inflammation because a lot of the pain in my back subsided after being almost unbearable for the previous 90 days.
 

One-Off

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View attachment 84585

Yes a Dr, but not a partner.... but he practiced along the same track.

Yes, strength training focused on general strength and conditioning...not specific body parts.

It was a Thursday and I signed the waivers in the neurosurgeons office saying I couldn't sue him if I was paralyzed and said, what the hell, if im going to be paralyzed Monday I'll mountain bike one more time. Got home and took a handful of Vicodin to get me through the pain and heading up a trail. On the way down my favorite trail I crashed and broke my collarbone. I needed surgery on it right away so I got it done on Monday instead. I think all the trazodone they hit you with via IV during and after the surgery did a number on the inflammation because a lot of the pain in my back subsided after being almost unbearable for the previous 90 days.
So that's the cure! Megadose of trazadone!
 

Autoprax

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Heavy lifting is my favorite thing.

Such a great self regulating strategy for high strung people.
 

hgsouth

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I'm now one week from my "back spasm." I'm off all meds (was given injections of dexamethasone and ketorolac at the ER, and valium, tramadol and naproxen to take at home). I can do normal, everyday activities, like getting out of bed, sitting up and sitting down, relatively pain free. Howeve,r if I go past a certain angle, the pain flares up. I'm nowhere near ready to surf :( I went for a long walk the other day and that seemed to set me back a bit. Debating the wisdom of trying to stretch just yet.

Before going to the ER the pain was so bad I could not stand or walk unassisted.

I hope your statements are true because the thought of having this condition recurring is depressing. It came totally without warning. I've never had back issues before an was having a normal surf session when it happened. However the unequivocal nature of your statements makes me ask for your research/data/sources/remedies before I mentally sign up for your point of view.

Right now I'm signed up for a back pain class next week given by my medical provider's PT group. I'll report back what they say....


ps unfortunately for me, Havocv's "cure' was a pricey ($400 for two hours) personal training session or $200 a month gym membership. More than I want to spend right now...thanks anyways...

eps my primary MD suggested I try acupuncture...

I'm not sure where you're located, but look into SpineZone . They are all over San Diego. The head of the company is a spinal surgeon who really tries to get his patients to NOT have spinal surgery. He has an entire book which is very much akin to the theories of John Sarno, but his big thing is strengthening muscles and exercising to relieve back pain.

I went with a very mysterious pulled muscle/spasm in my left flank that was giving me a lot of trouble. I think I injured it lifting things in and out of my car. I was so skeptical of their methodology - just specialized strength training equipment. But it farkin worked.

As soon as I can afford it I want to go to them for my neck issues.

In other news, I do not believe Chiropractic treatment has any medical basis and is essentially placebo. People should not allow their necks to be adjusted, especially women.
 
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One-Off

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I watched all hour and forty minutes of Havoc's videos. o_O but thanks.

I also had an appt. with a pain MD yesterday. He must be up to date on this thinking ( he was really young for an MD). He said it was good I had no imaging done. Like the videos, he said they would probably have found something and I would worry unnecessarily. He then asked what muscle relaxing meds the ER prescribed and laughed when I said "valium." Like the video, he said muscle relaxers are "general" and cannot target specific muscles. He said the opioid I was given (tramadol) was really light and low risk but that I did well to curtail ASAP. He also said to stay active. I asked him about weight training and he just said, "Yeah. That would be good." He just said to wait until the pain is mostly gone and then start incrementally.


Besides the psychological component that the Barbell Medicine guys talk about, they prescribe to go directly after the area that gave you problems. In a way it is what my PT did with my shoulder and neck- he manipulated me until he found the most painful positions and then had me stretch in those positions. I was like, "Isn't that gong to make it worse?" He said, "If it makes it worse back off a little."

My question is this- if it's my lower back that spasmed it seems like supermans, pop ups, bird dogs would be the prescription. How would you add weight to these?
 
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VonMeister

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I watched all hour and forty minutes of Havoc's videos. o_O but thanks.

I also had an appt. with a pain MD yesterday. He must be up to date on this thinking ( he was really young for an MD). He said it was good I had no imaging done. Like the videos he said they would probably have found something and I would worry unnecessarily. He asked what muscle relaxing meds the ER prescribed and laughed when I said "valium." Like the video he said muscle relaxers are "general" and cannot target specific muscles. He said the opioid I was given (tramadol) was really light and low risk but that I did well to curtail ASAP. He also said to stay active. I asked him about weight training and he just said, "Yeah. That would be good." He just said to wait until the pain is mostly gone and then start incrementally.


Besides the psychological component that the Barbell Medicine guys talk about, they prescribe to go directly after the area that gave you problems. In way it is what my PT did with my shoulder and neck- he manipulated me until he found the most painful positions and then had me stretch in those positions. I was like, "Isn't that gong to make it worse?" He said, "If it makes it worse back off a little."

My question is this- if it's my lower back that spasmed it seems like supermans, pop ups, bird dogs would be the prescription. How would you add weight to these?
You wouldn't do them because they are a waste of time.

The spasm is a result of a tertiary issue, namely the brain reading a nerve input as a danger signal. Remember, muscles contracting is a way for the body to protect itself. If I had to guess, the spasm is over and what you are experiencing is a hyper sensitivity to benign nerve inputs and some probable swelling.

Strength comes one way, by stressing a muscle, allowing it to recover with sleep and nutrition, and as a result of that recovery it adapts in order to be able to repeat the previous stress. If you do nothing but repeat the previous stress you will not drive any further adaption, so the strength remains the same. Body weight exercises will cause some stress if you aren't already adapted to it, but this is for a very short period of time, like once or twice, and not very remarkable. Also the exercises you mentioned don't produce much stress. (there's a difference between stress and exercise)

What's the best way to create the stressful conditions required to drive strength? Compound exercises that incorporate just about every muscle in your body at once of course. The quickest, most efficient, and safest way is with a barbell doing the squat, the deadlift, the overhead press and bench press adding small incremental weight every training day. This works in every single case every single time. There is no good substitute unless you are so weak that you are unable to perform any of these movements with an empty bar. At that point we would use machines but only for a very short period of time....even if you're 80 years old.

Muscle fibers go one direction and operate one way. They don't care about angles of movements, confusion, or whether you're doing them on your feet or standing on a silly ball. They contract and release. The best and safest way to train is with your feet generally shoulder width apart solidly planted on the floor, or in the case of the bench press, using your back as a solid attachment to an immovable platform. The weight should be centered over mid foot and the bar path should be as close to perfectly vertical as possible. This allows you to provide the maximum amount of stress in the most efficient and safest way.
 
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One-Off

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You wouldn't do them because they are a waste of time.

The spasm is a result of a tertiary issue, namely the brain reading a nerve input as a danger signal. Remember, muscles contracting is a way for the body to protect itself. If I had to guess, the spasm is over and what you are experiencing is a hyper sensitivity to benign nerve inputs and some probable swelling.

Strength comes one way, by stressing a muscle, allowing it to recover with sleep and nutrition, and as a result of that recovery it adapts in order to be able to repeat the previous stress. If you do nothing but repeat the previous stress you will not drive any further adaption, so the strength remains the same. Body weight exercises will cause some stress if you aren't already adapted to it, but this is for a very short period of time, like once or twice, and not very remarkable. Also the exercises you mentioned don't produce much stress. (there's a difference between stress and exercise)

What's the best way to create the stressful conditions required to drive strength? Compound exercises that incorporate just about every muscle in your body at once of course. The quickest, most efficient, and safest way is with a barbell doing the squat, the deadlift, the overhead press and bench press adding small incremental weight every training day. This works in every single case every single time. There is no good substitute unless you are so weak that you are unable to perform any of these movements with an empty bar. At that point we would use machines but only for a very short period of time....even if you're 80 years old.

Muscle fibers go one direction and operate one way. They don't care about angles of movements, confusion, or whether you're doing them on your feet or standing on a silly ball. They contract and release. The best and safest way to train is with your feet generally shoulder width apart solidly planted on the floor, or in the case of the bench press, using your back as a solid attachment to an immovable platform. The weight should be centered over mid foot and the bar path should be as close to perfectly vertical as possible. This allows you to provide the maximum amount of stress in the most efficient and safest way.

F...kin brain! It must have been an unconscious danger signal, because my conscious mind at the moment was enjoying a really nice, sunny, early morning surf (with mild irritation that the rising tide was slowing things down). Even when it started cramping my mental reaction was, "Just the cold, try stretching." I was not anticipating or perceiving a serious "threat" or "danger." Not consciously.

I'm getting better. I keep pushing. Yesterday I ran 4 miles. Today I was crawling around under my car, changing oil. every evening my back is sore. I find it hard to accept that the pain is just benign nerve input and that there's nothing physical going on...

If it's just mental, unconscious, I need to find a way to get into my unconscious and rough that f'fer up, tell him to stop sending false signals.

Asshole! I'm missing surf!
 
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VonMeister

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F...kin brain! It must have been an unconscious danger signal, because my conscious mind at the moment was enjoying a really nice, sunny, early morning surf (with mild irritation that the rising tide was slowing things down). Even when it started cramping my mental reaction was, "Just the cold, try stretching." I was not anticipating or perceiving a serious "threat" or "danger." Not consciously.

I'm getting better. I keep pushing. Yesterday I ran 4 miles. Today I was crawling around under my car, changing oil. every evening my back is sore. I find it hard to accept that the pain is just benign nerve input and that there's nothing physical going on...

If it's just mental, unconscious, I need to find a way to get into my unconscious and rough that f'fer up, tell him to stop sending false signals.

Asshole! I'm missing surf!
Picking up a heavy bar off the floor twice a week convinces me my back is fine. If my back happens to be stiff, it isn't by the time I'm done. Go figure.

I still have days were my lower back feels like it's pinching something, or I may have a tiny bit of sciatica radiating into my right but cheek. If it's a training day I just wake up and train and by the time my warm up sets are done it's completely gone. I don't change anything. I think that's where it's different. I never get that locked up can't move feeling anymore. Maybe my subconscious equates pain with training any my body is telling me to train...It's a mystery. On non training days I'll either squat with a light barbell or train on the assault bike and do some light ab work or the things I usually do on non training days.

If you have some stairs nearby or a hill go do some brisk jogs to light sprints up and down a few times. That will focus some stress on your lower back and really get things loosened up. Just be aware and if it's starts to hurt stop and resume previous activity.
 

One-Off

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If you have some stairs nearby or a hill go do some brisk jogs to light sprints up and down a few times. That will focus some stress on your lower back and really get things loosened up. Just be aware and if it's starts to hurt stop and resume previous activity.
The other day when I did my four mile, call it a jog, at the turn around there are some stairs. I usually do 5 climbs on the way back from my 10k runs. I also usually do them two steps at a time. Yesterday I did one, and on the second one I thought I'd try two steps and that turned on the pain button so I went back to taking them one at a time. Only did two climbs.

I'm shopping for a barbell set. Shiite is expensive. I probably have to wait until after this month's bills are paid. Lot of big stuff came up this month. And then it'll be competing with my desire for a new twin fin....all I want to do is surf. Not being able to makes you want it bad.
546dcefe7b3c9448c332da2178f90f92.jpg
 

Mr J

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He’s talking about the place I train at in oc. Ur closer to the one I suggested in LA. Anyways deadlifted > 1.5x my bodyweight today and my back feels incredible.
Havoc and VM, how do you avoid overuse when combining heavy lifting with another sport (surfing)? I am doing dumbbell exercises once a week for shoulders - just maintenance, not trying to be on an ever increasing strength program and I usually do it on wed or thurs, coz I'm normally stuck in the city thur/fri and I can get a rest day from surfing before paddling in the surf again. I get the impression that you both must be squatting more than once a week and wouldn't that hinder surfing?

I work for a sports science company and it is not a requirement to be a sports participant (don't need to be fit to be say a data scientist or coder, although the sports scientists seem to be capable of recording their own high intensity activity to test the equipment/software). Nevertheless the general culture of the place has ended up with a high percentage of sports nuts in the workforce and it can be interesting to compare notes. My bosses wife (middle aged) holds some sort of gym record for squatting and he tells me it cured her back problems. However, a sports scientist colleague told me his hip has never been the same since the time he did squats one day then went and played football the next day and something tweaked in his hip.
 

Havoc

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The other day when I did my four mile, call it a jog, at the turn around there are some stairs. I usually do 5 climbs on the way back from my 10k runs. I also usually do them two steps at a time. Yesterday I did one, and on the second one I thought I'd try two steps and that turned on the pain button so I went back to taking them one at a time. Only did two climbs.

I'm shopping for a barbell set. Shiite is expensive. I probably have to wait until after this month's bills are paid. Lot of big stuff came up this month. And then it'll be competing with my desire for a new twin fin....all I want to do is surf. Not being able to makes you want it bad.
View attachment 84733
Getting coached on the lifts is most important. If u deadlift or squat wrong u will fk up ur back
 
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Mr J

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Ya I don’t have the answer. I tweaked my shoulder today after heavy benching and deadlifting yesterday. My cutbacks were good tho lol
The dumbbells I do for my shoulder is not random stuff, but what was prescribed to me by a top physio (looks after 2 of Melbourne's footy teams). It was some years ago and he told me that strength protects when I was surprised at how much he wanted me to overhead press. If the shoulder is stronger than it needs to be for just say paddling, its more likely to withstand an unusually rough duck dive (or in my case skateboard slam, which was what sent me to him). However, as mentioned in my previous post I'm on maintenance now and at just once a week I can take a rest day the next day without interfering with my surfing.
 
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Mr J

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I’m actually thinking bout quitting surfing for couple months to get my strength up and then starting up again. Surfing fks up my recovery from the heavy lift days.
I followed a different path to recovery than you (I did chiro, combined with deep tissue massage, combined with very specific stretching and core strength training) - all at the same back centre and prescribed to me by the chiro. As with physios I like to be a compliant patient. So I do what they tell me even if I have concerns.

Anyway I was told to give away surfing for a few months - was allowed to continue skating thankfully. Anyway I followed that instruction and then ended up giving it away for about 2 1/2 years lol - became obsessed with skateboarding which I did up to 5 times a week.
 
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