Saturday, April 1, 2023

Back Pain Tip: Take a Walk – A REAL Walk!

October 17, 2011 by  
Filed under DVD Updates, Fitness & Health

People with back pain were once told – Go to Bed!  Now physicians and therapists often say – Take a walk!

But do these wellness professionals intend for you to walk with your spine rigid ??? You might as well go to bed.    No, they envision the natural movement pattern of the spine.   Yet, so many people walk without any thought to the movement of their spine.

I walk, therefore I exercise.  Really?

Watch people walk.  How many are really getting exercise?  How many are walking, head crooked into a cell phone or doing what I call walking oldWhat will help you achieve a more natural walking gait that will help your spine?    Here are some ideas:

  • Focus!  Put your attention into your walk.  Get off the cell phone, off the IPod, out of the external and really notice your form.
  • Notice your arm swing, your stride length, how your feet move, where you’re looking.
  • Are you breathing?
  • Give a mental lift to the bottom of your rib cage.
  • Notice what happens to your form when you think of adding attitude to your walk.
  • Think of cues like sachet, strut, sassy and see what happens to your form.
  • Roll your shoulders up, around and back.
  • Think of retracting and depressing your shoulder blades (see scapular stabilization on this blog).  This recruits the muscles that support and elongate the spine and feels really GOOD.
  • Learn how to use POLES to really strengthen your back muscles and to lock all this attitude in for your entire walk.
  • Create Positive Muscle Memory:  Give yourself a mental pat on the back when you’re focusing on your form.
  • Give yourself a mental pat on the back when you are not focusing on your form.  You remembered LATE!


3 Responses to “Back Pain Tip: Take a Walk – A REAL Walk!”
  1. Joe says:

    Having had major back surgery a year ago learning to walk and regain balance was a major challenge. I discovered poles and through Jayah’s help started to learn how to use themk. Then my physical therapist discovered what I was doing and she ordered the DVD Pole Walking for Balanve and she liked it and we use portions of it in my therapy sessions. When I went to England last June I took the poles and used them while birding in N Wales and they made my trip a lot more comfortable
    Thanks Jayah


  2. I’m still working on remembering to contract that muscle in my lower abdomen–the one you & Suzanne told me about at No Barriers! Every time my back hurts, I clench that muscle for as long as I can think about it. I call it an attention-span workout. 🙂