The Joys of Back Pain

Back in 2004 I pulled a muscle in my back trying on a pair of jeans. Ever since then I have suffered from back pain - most of the time only mild and only when I do certain things but occasionally I can be laid up for a few days or weeks while I allow things to heal.

Last year in February I had a back spasm and eventually was referred to a specialist in June. On the 29th December I finally had my appointment with the physio. After bending in various different directions and Helen, my physio, pressing on each individual vertebrae in my back, I was told I have an aggravated disc. At L3 to be precise as shown on the diagram below.

I also was told that my sciatic nerve, which runs the whole length of your body, is tight and therefore doesn't stretch when I bend hence why after three years of doing yoga I still don't appear to have made any progress.

So I have some exercises to do each day to stretch my nerve and also some stomach muscle strengthening exercises to protect my back. I have also been advised to take up Pilates which I started last week. I am already seeing a difference. Before I went to see the physio I could not get anywhere near my toes when I bent forward but already I am closer than ever to touching them.

The only thing I have had to give up is Body Combat. Unfortunately the nature of the choreography involves a lot of twisting which is hurting my back a lot so for the time being its low impact cardio-vascular work.

I am hoping this is not going to impact too much on any training for various events this year. Fingers crossed!

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