Forums General Low back/SI Joint/Hip reoccurring issues (aka typical low back injury) Re: Low back/SI Joint/Hip reoccurring issues (aka typical low back injury)

AvatarNathan Richer

I had a problem with my back also. In the past I had partially herniated discs in the last 3 vertebrae of my lumbar spine. it knocked me out for about 9 months from doing anything athletic. but through some PT it healed up so that it was pain-free, although i would get a flare up about 1-2x a year.  

But that was before I fixed my posture, began working on KBs and FMS, and discovered MWOD.
My posture sucked but I didn’t know it.  My first discoveries came from taking the Gokhale Method class with my mother. I had been over extended and didn’t even know it. But it only gave me part of the solution. They have some good guides on how to figure out your best spinal alignment, working on torso bracing, and some good elements on hinging.
KBs gave me another part of the answer as did taking the FMS cert.  You cannot do KB movements safely without knowing something about moving while in a good posture. I had poor mechanics when i started but slowly but surely they improved as i worked with a good coach and integrated MWOD.  Taking FMS helped me also understand proper movement mechanics, although it was not focused on posture there were many elements to work in, apporaching more from a functional and rehab standpoint.
MWOD gave me the last important bits of the answer.  The missing parts for me were, how to assess mobility for posture and how to get mobile enough to achieve a proper posture, and the need for bracing 20% in the glutes.  Also, the concept that posture was a 24/7 training endeavor – you cannot just train for posture in the gym for an hour and then stop. you must reinforce it all day and even all night when you sleep (sleeping curled up in bad posture is not a good thing).
The other thing to think about is breathing. It is not obvious but proper abdominal breathing (vs. breathing through the upper body) is crucial first, and THEN you need to train to be able to breathe while bracing the torso.  Our first inclination is to tighten up everything when we brace. But actually, you can brace with one set of muscles while taking in breaths with another set. This can be trained and is actually the right way to breathe. It will also be very useful when you’re doing continuous sets at high load so you don’t gas and get winded for air.
But back to the SI joint problem – it is inherently tied to proper posture and bracing during movements and workouts. You fix posture, maintain it 24/7, and i guarantee your back problems will go away – that and knowing when you should stop and put the bar down (no matter how many people around you are yelling at you to continue) because you can feel your ability to brace is slipping. To work through that slipping of concentration on maintaining bracing increases the risk dramatically that something bad will happen. I for one do not intend on being out of training for 9 months again….