As spring gets into full swing we want to get out and be more active again, walking, sprucing up the garden and tackling all those DIY jobs which have been waiting over the winter.
But it’s all too easy to let enthusiasm get the better of us and overdoing things can lead to stiff, sore, aching backs.
Backs were designed for moving, but they need a little TLC, so make sure you Mind Your Back with Mentholatum’s five simple S.T.E.P.S. which cost little in time and even less in equipment!
• Stretch – five easy to follow stretches to help ease tight back muscles and keep you mobile.
• Therapy – when life gets in the way and you can’t fit in all the S.T.E.P.S. use hot or cold therapy to ease the aches and pains
• Exercise – go for a walk, a swim or a cycle ride, just start slowly and build up gradually
• Posture – could you draw a straight line between your ear, shoulder and hip when sitting down or ear, shoulder, hip, knee and ankle when standing? No? Then it’s time to pay attention to posture
• Strengthen – five more exercises, this time to strengthen your core muscles and help prevent back pain. A strong core means a stronger back.
You can do your stretches anywhere at any time, no need for special equipment or the full-on Lycra-clad gym experience. Just listen to your body and take it slowly at the start, never over-extending or pushing yourself too hard and stop at once if you feel any pain.
Chester Personal Trainer, Adam Goodwin, says working with a personal trainer is the easiest way to achieve results, stay motivated and avoid injury.
These back exercises are targeted towards helping your back muscles recover, and can be done by anyone – but if you have a bad back it probably isn’t a good idea to just start general exercise without any personal guidance or support, such as a personal trainer or one on one yoga instructor. If you aren’t in Chester, Bark, an independent services marketplace is a great way to find a qualified personal trainer close to where you are – their search service will help you find personal trainers near you.
Back care’s a step-by-step marathon, not a sprint!
Jillian Watt, director of Marketing and New Product Development at Mentholatum, says:
“Rest and painkilling tablets used to be the recommended treatment for muscular back pain, but that advice has been turned on its head and it is now widely recognised that exercise should be the first recommendation for treating low back pain. It is a key recommendation in the latest advice from NICE (the National Institute for Clinical Excellence)1,2. And the Self Care Forum recommends topical treatments such as hot or cold therapy and topical painkillers to help ease pain in the lower back muscles.
“We have developed #mindyourback to give back pain sufferers clear, key advice in a one-stop shop making it easier to manage their back pain with five simple S.T.E.P.S. which can fit into the busiest lives. We are delighted to have the support of health and exercise professionals including personal trainer Faisal Abdallah, physiotherapist and yoga instructor Celeste Pereira.
“You may be ‘getting your five a day’ – now it’s time to ‘do your five a day’ with #mindyourback.”