We’re going to go through three tips that you need to know about in order to have success with your back pain rehab program from home. From experience, we see a lot of people going around the internet and different practitioners trying lots of different things. Without these tips or principles, you’re really going to struggle to have any lasting success or any short term success for that matter. It doesn’t matter whether you’re doing our back in shape program, you’re going to find this essential to your back pain rehab success.
#1 Technique matters with back pain rehab
The technique is important. For example, when you were learning to walk, if you fell over when you are one or two years old, you wouldn’t say walking is the problem, you’d identify your technique to be the problem. Maybe this is the first time you’ve done this particular stretch in that way with those nuanced changes. It can take a little time to get comfortable and get it right. The reason we have those nuanced differences is because they work, you’re not going to get it right the first time, that’s okay. It’s perfectly normal for you to get a little reaction when you’re doing the exercise wrong, but that shouldn’t put you off learning how to get it right. It may just mean you need a little extra guidance. In our case, we’ve got lots of support through videos that help you break it down, so you can do it correctly.
In the Premium Back In Shape membership, we have even more help to make sure that you can get on well as technique is so important, it can’t be understated. When it comes to the exercises we recommend, they have worked for literally hundreds, if not thousands of people from our clinical experience and from Back In Shape. So we know the exercises work, whether it’s a slipped disc, or bulging disc, whether it’s degenerative disc disease in the spine, or spondylolisthesis, or post surgery. For all of these different cases, we know the exercises work when the technique is done correctly.
Persevere. Some aches and pains when you’re learning them is okay. And if you’ve got any questions, always reach out to someone for support.
#2 Don’t stagnate with your back pain rehab
Tip number two is really, important and a common trap that a lot of people fall into. And that’s getting stuck on relief or technique based exercises for way too long.
In the case of the Back In Shape program, we are talking about the Phase 1. People stay on there for much, much longer than is necessary.
This is a pivotal point because all too often we’ve seen patients in the clinic, or Back In Shape members, where they’re walking five miles a day, or five kilometres a day, or 10,000 steps, and they’re still doing a Phase 1 exercise!
Now if you didn’t know, Phase 1 is your stretches, it’s your relief based exercises. Other exercises that would fit this (that we do NOT recommend) would be your knee rocks or knee hugs. These exercises are not doing a thing for building your strength, doing a core engagement like one of our Phase 1 exercises, that’s not doing a thing for your strength.
It’s not improving. It’s teaching you how to do that exercise which is vital. But once you’ve learned how to do it, mission accomplished, move on! Now sometimes they are useful going forward in certain capacities which we talk about more in the Back In Shape program, but you must move on to strengthening.
Strengthening is what gives you that permanent change. It’s the strengthening that gives you that permanent improvement. And if you’re going through your back pain rehab with us in Back In Shape, then you are going to see that Phase 2 is where we begin that strengthening process. Point number one (technique) becomes relevant again, learning those new exercises will have its challenges, but you’ve got the support to make sure that you do them correctly. If you’re struggling, you can always reach out and ask.
Moving from relief based exercises to proper strengthening work can be the most daunting process for someone with longer term back pain but we cannot stress enough. Do not stay doing simple stretching or mobilisation exercises for the long term because they’re not designed for that. They will not help make your back more robust, more resilient, and ultimately, they’re not rehabilitating anything.
#3 Stick to the one back pain rehab program
The final tip is really one of the most important because when it comes to fixing back pain from home, it is consistency over a period of time that helps back pain. All too often it has built up over many months or even years. Bad practice and just not knowing has been a major contributor. So if we don’t adhere to tip number three, then we’re going to struggle. Pick the program and just the program.
In the past where we’ve had people that are struggling along the way. You speak to them you say hey, I’m doing it, I’m doing it every day. But I’m also doing this that and the other, in the majority of cases these “extra curricular” activities are running in direct conflict. Once removed, sure enough things start to improve.
So if you’re following a back pain program, you’re doing it from home, follow just that program. I’ve used the analogy in previous videos, if you’ve seen any of our live streams in the past, during the initial lockdown that we had in the UK, it’s like trying to lose weight. If you’re following a diet program that has you eating healthy food, but then you’re adding in an extra bit of cake. Much like with back pain, if you’re doing all the right stuff, whether it’s our Phase one, two, or three, and then you’re adding in bits of something else, then it’s just not going to work. For example, you might do the towel exercise as we recommend which is fantastic for unloading the pressure that’s going through your lumbar spine particularly at L4, L5 and S1. But if you finish that and then start doing a child pose as part of your yoga routine, you’ve completely wasted your time and undone all the good!
So I urge you to follow the program and don’t customise it unless you’ve spoken to a professional or the makers of set program to adjust it for you. Customisations are something that we do for our Premium group. For whatever reasons, they may need to adjust and tweak certain exercises, maybe to compensate for a neck issue. Sometimes the neck issue can get in the way of the back progress because certain positions are uncomfortable for the neck problem. So we need to tailor things and tweak things. But always ask the person who’s developed the program, the person who’s put the hard work in and the experience developing it.
Hopefully you found this article helpful and the video informative. Make sure you follow these tips and you’ll have some great success.