back problems

gdh's picture
gdh started the topic in Wednesday, 18 Sep 2013 at 1:04pm

With Owen Wright bowing out to back injury, I thought it might be interesting to throw it out there and see what others have tried to overcome a back complaint or outright total back immobility? What have you tried?
I remember reading one of Uplifts posts on strength and conditioning which I think is important but I've found regular prolonged static stretching (40+ secs) and a few yoga inspired movements critical to keeping my lower back and hip strength in check.

trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet commented Wednesday, 18 Sep 2013 at 2:34pm

I spent near on two years out of the water due to a lower back injury, absolute hell at times.

My strategy is daily yoga, core strength exercise sessions at least 3 times a week and a low sugar/saturated fat diet. Considering diet, the best thing I have done for myself in the last 12 months is started consuming cold pressed Hemp seed oil and home made Hemp seed milk. My joints and muscles are loving me for it. Do some research on the benefits of eating hemp seed, you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Just as a general health booster which no doubt has a positive effect to reduce inflammation is a daily homemade fresh fruit/veg juice, plus great for the immune system and an incredible energy boost when taken before a surf, you'll be paddling like a champ for hours without the lactic burn of refined sugar.

Sugar and saturated fats are a big cause of inflammation, so high sugar/fat intake will definitely show within 12/24 hours of eating. The other big cause of inflammation that most crew don't consider is alcohol, arguably worse than sugar or saturated fat. Lucky for me I gave up drinking piss long before the back injury.

And I can't stress enough the importance of thorough stretching before and after surfing, or any strenuous physical activity for that matter...mind you, I don't think the missus would like to hear, "hang on love, just gotta do some stretches" before bumping uglies, talk about mood killer.

trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet commented Wednesday, 18 Sep 2013 at 4:24pm

Something else I forgot to mention...hate to say it guys, but for those with a seriously buggered back...get a SUP! Ahh, to the dark side I hear you say, well, if it was not for the SUP, I would not have been able to start surfing again after the long layoff.

There was no way I was going to be able to pump to my feet from a prone position after the long layoff (still suffering serious back pain and mobility issues), but after 12 weeks cruising on the SUP, both flat water and surfing, my core strength had improved so much getting on a 8' mal was the next step. One thing a SUP does is give great core strength training as well as stability muscle training without strain. Once ya find the groove on a SUP, ya can paddle all day effortlessly.

After doing 6 months on the 8 footer, I was able to get back on my 6'3" with ease, and back to 37yr old grommet hood I went.

trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet commented Sunday, 17 Nov 2013 at 9:17am

This vid is evidence of how a serious back injury can be overcome. It was a long two year battle, from not being able to lift my feet off the ground while walking for the first three months untill getting back on the SUP.

This vid was taken 18 months after getting back in the water. only 2 foot but breaking onto a shallow ledge...keeps ya on ya toes.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tp-xOvJpTQI

stickyson's picture
stickyson's picture
stickyson commented Wednesday, 18 Sep 2013 at 10:11pm

Yeah lost track of the days in my early twenties when I used to have to crawl to the shitter, got to see a very good naturaph and explained my situation, my line of work and bad lifting practices, he told me to strip for a massage and then he just laughed at me, I had on a cotton t-shirt and windcheater he then went into this speel about who taught our fore fathers how to lift etc but did they have back problems like we do, no they always wore woolen flannels. Think about it you sweat in a t-shirt it gets wet then you have a kalgoolie fridge effect,wind over wet cloth creates a chill. Am now 57 years old still surf and work in a physical environment and thanks to WOOLEN singlets no back problems. Yeah hard to believe but think about they are not a fashion item but neither is crawling to the shitter

nomad1's picture
nomad1's picture
nomad1 commented Thursday, 19 Sep 2013 at 9:47pm

Alot of my back, shoulder and neck problems have gone away by concentrating on core strength stuff. Doing lots of planks, bridges etc its helped my posture alot and my back has thanked me for it.

trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet's picture
trippergreenfeet commented Friday, 20 Sep 2013 at 9:32am

@stickyson, I forgot about the crawling about the house, a shitty part of the experience I had blocked from the mind.

Posture is where it's at, if I don't keep the 'iron shirt' on while doing any physical activity, I'll get a lower back spasm or two to remind me...scare's me when that happens as the next step is hitting the deck in white hot pain, fucked if I wanna go back to crawling about again.

crustt's picture
crustt's picture
crustt commented Friday, 20 Sep 2013 at 11:04am

I went through all that for years, eventually went to a doctor in Geelong who surfed and specialized in sports medicine. My back was basically worn out from surfing and lugging mud bricks around, went through hell on and off for 15 years, then this doc referred me onto a clinic that basically cut the offending nerves with a lazer, been years now and never had a problem except for the odd strained muscle.

blindboy's picture
blindboy's picture
blindboy commented Saturday, 21 Sep 2013 at 1:17pm

I spent a week flat on my back in a tiny room in Indo, and that's what I suggest for acute back pain. Do nothing, take pain killers and wait until you are absolutely pain free before trying anything more challenging than a short walk.

asto's picture
asto's picture
asto commented Thursday, 26 Sep 2013 at 12:10pm

Ahhh, dodgy backs. I've been blowing discs since my roof carpenter days 30 years ago. It wasn't until I did a major job on one 10 years ago that put me out of the water for a few years that I turned to pilates and yoga. Pilates was the best thing ever and my body and back have never ever ever felt so good. Haven't blown a disc since!!!! And yeh stretching before a surf or mowing the lawn or painting etc. is essential. Its a long road to recovery but so worth it.

smelly-dog's picture
smelly-dog's picture
smelly-dog commented Thursday, 26 Sep 2013 at 6:05pm

no fun but disk bulges and in turn immobility are common i have had my lower back s1 disc scraped that relieved the pain but as roofer each now and again resurfaces i agree that your core strength is the key ie strong stomach muscles .make the time every day before brekkie to stretch and if possible to do sit ups i know surfing can stur up problems but swimming will help and get you back in the water

crankitupto11's picture
crankitupto11's picture
crankitupto11 commented Friday, 25 Oct 2013 at 6:15pm

I've been fighting lower back issues for the past few months after getting rolled on a shallow sandbank and breaking my fall back first. The initial injury had me out of action for a week, and then a couple of weeks ago I re-injured it picking something up with poor form.

Couple of expensive visits to the physio and I'm back on track. Lots of stretches to open up that area two-three times a day. A bit annoying but once you're in the habit it's not too bad. Also have to be careful with posture at work and make sure I have a break and get up and move around every 30 minutes.

If you have back issues or want to avoid them, then go see a good and experienced physio they'll put you on the right path. Flexibility, core strength and good posture is essential to keep surfing for as long as possible.

ccbver's picture
ccbver's picture
ccbver commented Friday, 8 Nov 2013 at 10:26pm

I reckon theres many causes. I've had years of debilitating problems due to just muscle spasms only...yep absolutely zero physical damage to my back that was evident after seeing xrays and mri's and all the pain was just muscle spasms! So get your back & hips occassionally straightened with a chiro. I go twice a year to a chiro because I reckon my alignment over time just gets wrong. I've also made a standing desk at the office so my posture muscles are working more thoughout the day rather than sitting on my arse. Its really hard to sit all day and retain good posture but standing forces good posture or you'll fall over. Simply standing engages your core. Lastly I focus on ankle and hip mobility lots. Full deep squats are the best for hips and ankles, most adults have lost the ability to full squat because their ankle joints have tightened up. Lack of mobility in these core joints means your lower back has more work to do. Anyway these days I rarely have problems. Its been a 2 year learning experience but its nice when you get it under control. Good luck with solving your problems.

simba's picture
simba's picture
simba commented Saturday, 9 Nov 2013 at 7:42am

yoga and pilates,strength and stretch,lower back mainly caused from tight hammies.Take control of your body and do it for yourself,learn.I learnt the hard way,thought chiros would save me,they help but after 25 years of back problems and going 2-3 times a week it wasnt happening for me.Blew a disc one day surfing and crawled around the floor for a week,my wife bought home a book called The Back Sufferers Bible by Sarah Keys and after reading this a few times i started to understand how the back functions.Havent been to a chiro for ten years,dont need to and i wish i had listened years ago when people would say get into yoga ,pilates so do it for yourself.Pilates should be taught in schools.!

simba

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Monday, 16 Dec 2013 at 2:25pm

trippergreenfeet wrote: Considering diet, the best thing I have done for myself in the last 12 months is started consuming cold pressed Hemp seed oil and home made Hemp seed milk. My joints and muscles are loving me for it. Do some research on the benefits of eating hemp seed, you'll be pleasantly surprised.

Just an update on this. I had severe back problems about 2-3mths ago. I normally get back pain around Sept/Oct every year.....very weird I know. Normally lasts about 1-2 weeks and then it's gone. This year was bad. Still got a niggling back since August. It's been up and down. I read the post above and started taking hemp seeds daily when my back didn't improve after a week or two as it has done in the past. Back just didn't mend......was up and down most weeks with the worst times hardly being able to walk and having to take anti-inflams. Kept taking hemp seeds. No real improvement. Ran out of hemp seeds about 3 weeks ago and kinda started to reduce my intake of them about a month ago. Back has improved out of site. Still occasionally niggly....more so during the week when I sit in front of the computer at work all day. Thought I'd do some research on hemp seeds and anti-inflammatory capabilities after i noticed this improvement in my back from NOT taking hemp seeds. Turns out Hemp seeds are full of Omega 3 AND Omega 6. Western diets are very high in Omega 6 already. Omega 3 is the anti-inflammatory good stuff. Omega 6 has actually been shown to be an inflammatory. They reckon the combined Omega 3 and 6 cancel out the anti-inflammatory improvements from the Omega 3, and if your diet is already high in Omega 6 (which most western diets already are) then taking more Omega 6 is not good for anti-inflammatory. Research is still not 100% conclusive, but they reckon an Omega 3 supplement with no Omega 6 is better for anti-inflammatory. In fact, they believe a high EPA Omega 3 with low DHA Omega 3 is the best anti-inflammatory.

Just relaying my experience above so that others can have a balanced opinion/view when looking into the benefits for back problems.

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Monday, 16 Dec 2013 at 2:38pm

does anyone suffer from lower back pain after consuming meals loaded with 621 msg ? as in Chinese or thai food, or foods which labels state 621 is an ingredient ?

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Monday, 16 Dec 2013 at 4:35pm

udo - wouldn't surprise me if MSG caused ALOT more other things that lower back pain. I try to avoid any food with numbers in these days after my son suffers from allergies and eczema.

wellymon's picture
wellymon's picture
wellymon commented Monday, 16 Dec 2013 at 5:31pm

@ Don, good research there, it is such an important supplement to take every day which is so beneficial in many aspects of the human body. Omega 3 fish oil tablets and Spirulina are a part of my every day gulp downs :), even if I'm eating lots of fish and salmon etc. Playing years of cricket when younger as a medium pace bowler did havoc to my lower back, but I've never been hospitalised like some of the fellas above with serious back problems, touch wood.
As well, IMO controlled stretching, smooth breathing ie yoga and the likes are paramount for not only your back but your whole body. Having a strong strong core is the key.
Maybe these various methods are a placebo or maybe it come down to positive thinking as well...?
I think they work well.

Our brains are too small at the moment to comprehend the reality of what's happening in our forests . We're only just waking up so to speak . The big problem is we think we know everything, we are specks of dust on a timeline and we know nothing .

ruseford's picture
ruseford's picture
ruseford commented Wednesday, 6 Jan 2016 at 8:25pm

Hi

If you are suffering from back problem, then in my opinion you must opt for the massage therapy. Massage can help alleviate the muscle spasms which occur when your rib or thoracic joints lose mobility, thereby helping those joints function better. It's even possible to increase the mobility of your sacroiliac joint or tail bone by massaging the gluteal muscles and releasing tension in the tissues. There are many massage schools from where you can avail the massage therapy. I have recently taken the massage from the massage school named Institute Of Est West Wellness. You can also contact them via http://instituteofeastwestwellness.com/