Back and back pain is the main reason for sick leave, especially in the 30 to 50 age group. Women are affected more often than men. The reason for this is the female physique: the pelvis is wider and rounder, the lumbar spine is shaped differently – adjustments to a possible pregnancy. Muscles and ligaments are weaker and more flexible in women than in men in order to stretch sufficiently during pregnancy. During pregnancy, the lumbar spine, trunk and back muscles are subjected to greater stress than in men. If the abdominal muscles are slack, as in the case of overweight or due to a predominantly sedentary job, all the work must be done by the back muscles. This then tires, cramps and causes pain.
Many pregnant women, but especially working women, complain of back and loin pain. For women who are mainly employed standing, back pain is also caused by the heavy strain on the legs and feet, especially when the arches of the feet have already lowered or when only shoes with high heels are worn.
However, back problems can also be caused by the wrong technique when lifting loads, for example when transferring patients in the nursing profession or carrying heavy loads in the household. Many people lift loads with a bent back or jerkily. Even permanent one-sided strain can cause tension and back pain.
Last but not least, the psyche often plays an important role for women. Women are often in need of harmony, have difficulty saying “no” and therefore expect too much from themselves. Many of them are burdened with the responsibility for the family, worries about the offspring or parents in need of care. In recent years, intensive pain research has shown that the psyche plays a significant role in the development of back pain.
Prevention with movement and correct movement sequences
So that the “cross with the cross” does not get out of hand, here are some tips:
– Reduce your weight load:
Although there is no sure direct connection between overweight and back pain, every kilo too much puts too much strain on the back and makes movement more difficult.
– Carry and lift correctly:
Unconsciously wrong movements and jerky movements should be avoided at all costs! When lifting and setting down loads, keep your back straight, bend your knees and spread your legs slightly outwards. In this way the intervertebral discs are not compressed. Loads should be grasped with both hands from a safe position and lifted evenly. Crouch down as far as necessary when picking up and setting down loads; the back should remain straight.
– Back-friendly working:
When working in a seated position, it is advisable to relax your back and spine, e.g. by sitting on a chair, bending your head towards your knees and stretching your arms downwards. A correctly adjusted office chair is also important.
– Strengthen the trunk and back muscles:
The best way to prevent back pain is to have well-trained abdominal and back muscles and sufficient exercise. Suitable sports are above all swimming, cycling, Nordic walking, back exercises and fitness training. For sports enthusiasts, a sports group or sports club makes sense. Above all, it is important to exercise regularly. If you only do sport every three months and then try to make up for lost time with a particularly ambitious training schedule, you are not doing your body and especially your back any good.
A preventive training program in a back school can also help strengthen the trunk and back muscles. There, participants learn exercises that they can perform permanently on their own, or receive advice on suitable sports activities.