my name is Mike Kuzniewski. I am the clinical director at NY Physical Therapy & Wellness Elmhurst. This month, I’d like to go over the topic of low back pain (LBP). Many of us suffer from LBP, as many as 80% will experience this according to acatoday.org. In order to prevent it we need to be proactive in our approach. Let’s start by doing the right things before the injury occurs, & not try to fix the problem after the fact. Listen… don’t feel bad. Most of our society is reactive not proactive, or else we wouldn’t be in business!
We can start by making changes, eating the right foods, exercising, & most important by being able to keep stress levelslow. I’m sure you’ve heard these things before, but they happen to be true & therefore they keep coming up in articles. Stress in my opinion is the most important, it leads to a lot of mental anguish & even LBP. Our low back is important to us & always seems to take a beating. Here are some little tips I want to give you to help you out:
- We need to keep our core Our core encapsulates the abdomen plus low back. Without core strength our low back tends to be more prone to bad posture, which in turn will inevitably cause pain.
- We need to lift with our legs not our back. Again, I’m sure you have heard this before but still I see it all day long. To add to this please do not rotate your trunk when lifting something off the floor, i.e. lifting those grocery bags into your car. I’m sure some of you have experienced a pinch or sharp pain when lifting the wrong way.
- A simple exercise called a tummy tuck is something we can do when getting up from a chair or sitting down. All you have to do is tighten your stomach & hold for approx. 3 seconds & then let go. You can also perform this as an exercise 3 x10 reps 3-5x a week.
LBP can come out of nowhere, something as simple as picking up a sock off the floor can lead to being crippled afterwards. We have all felt that feeling of oh no… Other back pain stems from auto accidents, falls, sports injuries, or chronic overuse. Either way, let’s again guys try to be proactive & explore ways to avoid the injury. Or ask a professional…. stop by to one of our offices, we would be happy to help.
Here are some things I want you to pay attention to:
*Am I slouching on the couch to the right or left all the time?
*Am I talking on the phone with my head cocked to left all the time?
*How am I picking up the groceries off the floor? Am I really lifting with my legs?
*Am I wearing the right back support if I know my back hurts?
*Am I wearing supportive sneakers?
*How many pillows am I sleeping with? Do I have a sea of pillows or one?
*How is my chair at work? Is it ergonomically friendly?
*Can I still bend down & touch my toes?
Try to be more mindful of these points & hopefully it helps avoid LBP.
Your PT buddy, Mike
Dr. Michael Kuzniewski graduated with his Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science and Nutrition from Queens College in 2010. In 2012 he began to pursue the pre-requisite qualifying courses for entering DPT school and went on to graduate from NYIT with his Doctorate in Physical Therapy in May 2015. After completing his degree, Michael began work as a PT in an outpatient orthopedic practice, and most recently was promoted to Clinical Director at NY Physical Therapy & Wellness. He is currently pursuing the OCS certification to further his PT skills. He is a published PT with an article in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy, “THE IMMEDIATE AND LONG-TERM EFFECTS OF KINESIOTAPE® ON BALANCE AND FUNCTIONAL PERFORMANCE.” Michael enjoys treating a variety of clinical cases but finds his niche in sports physical therapy and post- surgical rehab. His passion has always been patient driven and he constantly strives to becoming a better PT.