Sports Related Back Pain

While most educational and medical resources reference exercise and related activities as a treatment for back pain, a person's injury may be related to the sports that they play. People get injured all the time in nearly every type of place or activity, including from bathroom falls and extended time sitting in a chair. People also get injured from playing sports, from both traumatic injuries and overuse types of movements. Sports related back pain is often associated with those that involve high impact to the ground and those that require a lot of rotational type movements.

Rotational Sports: Sports that involve twisting movements that put a lot of pressure on the spine include racquetball, golf, and tennis. These sports involve explosive movement where the entire trunk of the body twists inwards or outwards to launch projectiles forward. These types of explosive torque-type movements may be at the root cause of your back pain or may exacerbate a pain condition that you have.



If you experience pain but still want to continue one of these favorite sports of yours, then you should take these appropriate steps before beginning your next activity. Before each rime going out there for your rotational sport, you should warm up completely and stretch all the muscles involved in your workout. You should also do exercises at the gym that strengthen the back muscles and obliques as well as increase their flexibility. Muscles that are warm and flexible are less likely to become injured during strenuous strength training or aerobic exercises.

All of the racquet sports, as well as other swinging sports such as lacrosse and baseball, involve movements such as banding for volleys, lunging, and running. Your knees are among the joints of the body that take a lot of abuse as you are doing these high impact movements. Volleyball and tennis serves, are two sports in particular where you really have to arch your back to reach up and back to meet the ball. This arching of the back provides the potential of back injuries. If these arching motions of the body cause or exacerbate pain, then there are instructors out there in every sport that may teach you how to accomplish the same sports plays without putting so much abuse on your back. A professional can teach you how to slice a serve that requires less arching than a kick serve.

Changing your racquet may change the way you need to play to get excellent power on the ball. Older generation racquets require more trunk rotation to generate enough power to drive the ball forward. Today's modern racquets allow their users to generate more power launching the ball forward while using a shorter stroke. Flexible racquets require longer more fluid motions to get the same power on the ball as a stiffer racquet with a shorter stroke. If you want to make your racquet stiffer, take it to the local pro shop to have it strung at the lower end of the recommended string tension.

If you are a golfer with a bad back, who doesn't want to give up your favorite active pastime, there are places you can go to learn how to properly swing the ball without putting unacceptable levels of stress on your back. One such clinic that offers golfers lessons on good body mechanics is the Center for Spine in Savannah Georgia. This center employs both physical therapists and golf pros who teach golfers how to drive the ball and rotate their bodies without straining the back. In some cases, the team there recommends longer shafts with shorter irons, like the five-iron wedge, that reduces the amount that the golfer has to bend at the waist.

Many golf related lumbar strains occur when golfers rotate their entire body to bring the golf club back behind their body and then forward again to meet the ball. Other golfers may strain their back by simply bending over to pick up the gold ball from the ground, and out of the hole. Golfers may minimize the risk of this type of injury by bending their knees to reach down to get the ball, or getting an adapter for the bottom of their putter grip that can pick the ball out of the hole.