Sports Medicine
A Crucial Period
Good Pain, Bad Pain
On Your Knees
Secondary Injuries
Imaging Technology
What's Sciatica?
The Female Athlete
Putting Your Feet First
Itis Schmitis
Too Much, Too Soon
Under the Influence
What's Goin' On?
Think Inches, Not Pounds
Preventing Vaginitis
That Painful Pull
Athlete's Heart
Exercise & Arthritis
Chilled to the Bone
Measuring Body Fat
Exercise and Your Breasts
Choosing a Sports Doctor
Lean on Me (Shoulder)
Exercise & Anemia
Exercise Abuse
Pelvis Sighting
Hand Aid
It's All in the Wrist
Back in Action
Altitude Adjustment
Tennis Elbow, Anyone?
Exercising in the Heat
Agony of the Feet
Restless Legs
Night Time Cramps
Birth Control Concerns
No Periods, No Babies?
Post Partum Prescription
Weight Loss Mystery
Undesirable Cooldown
To Brew Or Not To Brew
Fitness After Baby
Biking and Back Pain
Swimmer's Shoulder
A Hidden Athlete
Avoiding Osteoporosis
Drug Testing
Maximum Heart Rate
Headway Against Headaches
Torn Rotator Cuff
Fat Figures
Bloody Urine
Sag Story
Lackluster Leg
Bothersome Bulge
Gaining in Years
Taking It On the Shin
Aching Ankles
Hoop Help
Tender Toes
Meals For Muscle
Growing Pains
Hot Tips
High Altitude PMS
Personal Bests
Air Pollution
Ankle Blues
Heartbreak Heel
Yeast Relief

Back In Action


Disc - ussion

The spine's 24 vertebrae are stacked on top of each other separated by cartliage and soft cushions called intervertebral discs. Discs are like jelly doughnuts- they're thick, fibrous rings filled with a softer gelatinous substance. With age, these discs dry and lose height and shock absorption. They can bulge or rupture and cause pressure on surrounding structures.

The vertebrae are supported by a complex arrangement of ligaments, muscles and tendons. An intricate network of nerves exit from the spinal column through gaps between the vertebrae, called foramen. They transport electrical messages controlling your body to and from the brain.

Back pain can result from a pinched nerve caused by deterioration of the discs between the vertebrae. A pinched nerve causes muscles to spasm and cramp. One of the primary goals of treatment is to get those muscles to relax. Only then can you begin to treat the cause of the spasm. Until the muscles relax, you may be unable to tie your shoelaces or brush your teeth, let alone continue your exercise program.

Other causes of back pain include osteoporosis and kidney disease. An evaluation by a physician is highly recommended if you are not sure why your back aches.

Preventing Back Pain

There are several keys to preventing low back pain. Most important is your day-to-day posture while sitting, standing and moving. It's essential to reduce excessive lordosis or slumping and to provide support for your lower back while sitting. And, though you might be doing adominal crunches daily, this won't have a significant positive effect on your spine unless you pratice good posture during your daily activity.

Supportive furniture that fits your body dimensions is important in the office, home and car. Your thighs should be completely supported and your feet should firmly touch the ground while the back of the chair fully supports your lower anti midback. Lumbar supports can help. Even a pillow or towel roll slipped behind your back as you drive, watch TV or work at your computer can make a tremendous difference.

What else can you do to create an environment that will help you maintain your day-to-day posture?

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Table of Contents

Foreword: Billie Jean King

Comments by Barb Harris
Editor in Chief,
Shape Magazine

General Health
Common Medical Problems
Dental Health
Infectious Disease
Sexual Health
Emotional Well-Being
Eating Disorders
Alcohol & Other Drugs
Environmental Health

The information in this web site is for educational purposes only and is not providing medical or professional advice. It should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. If you have or suspect you might have any health problems, you should consult a physician.

Copyright 2000 - Sports Doctor, Inc.