Low back pain is one of the most commonly reported health problems in the UK, where around three-quarters of the population will experience low back pain at some point in their lives. Low back pain most commonly diagnosed (90%) as Non-Specific Low Back Pain (NSLBP) which means that the pain and stiffness is not identified to be due to a specific muscle, nerve, ligament, vertebral structure or soft-tissue cause. Low back pain can be caused by specific health conditions but they are far less common. However, it is important to be assessed and screened by a Healthcare Professional to rule out other causes of back pain which may require other investigation and treatment.
It is important to remember that low back pain is normal and will usually resolve itself within 1-3 months through remaining active, using over-the-counter pain control and the incorporation simple self-treatment such as using heat and ice packs. Around 10-20% of individuals who experience back pain have pain that persists beyond 3 months. At this point the cause and cycle of low back pain can be greater than just the initial anatomical and physiological causes, where an individual will have other associations with the pain, most commonly being a psycho-social element of disability and pain perception. From here it may be necessary for input from multiple healthcare professionals to treat and manage each element of the problem.
Neck pain can be a sudden onset (acute) bout of pain or more gradual long-term ache and niggle. Around two out of three people will experience neck pain at some point in their lives and it’s important to remember that neck pain, like low back pain, is normal. In most cases of neck pain, the causes of pain are unclear and like low back pain, the majority of neck pain is termed Non-Specific Neck Pain (NSNP) and most likely due to small injury to tendons and muscles, repetitive movements and poor posture.
Hydrotherapy, manual therapy and exercise therapy have been demonstrated to be effective for the treatment, management and prevention of both low back pain and neck pain.
Following on from Ed Archer's excellent workshop, he will be doing training sessions here at Back into Action on a Friday afternoon, starting from 13th November onwards:
There will be 40 minute slots available to book:
2:00pm – 2:40pm
2:40pm – 3:20pm
3:20pm – 4:00pm
With pricing options as follows:
One-to-one is £40.00; Shared session 2 persons £25.00pp, 3-4 persons £20pp
Fast Track Course (individual) 6 sessions: £210
Fast Track Shared (pair) 6 sessions: £135.00
Fast Track Group (3-6) 6 sessions: £100.00
Thank you Ed for a very interesting and insightful workshop.....anyone training for any sport or just wanting to improve their general health/fitness/strength should come and see Ed! From young athletes aiming for optimum results to older clients wanting to "stay young" Ed's training principles are simple, they work and any individual will benefit.
It is scary to think how many people are out there doing a brilliant job trying to get fit....yet don't realise they are lining them selves up for injury.
We are thrilled that Ed will be doing some sessions here on a Friday afternoon (more details to follow) if you are interested please get in touch.
Check out this article that Clare contributed to.....great info for farmers!
Aquatic Therapy otherwise known as Hydrotherapy has had some interesting professional and media coverage over the past years. It’s seen as by some Healthcare Professionals as the ‘tried everything else’ option, where referral to a hydrotherapy pool is sometimes viewed as a nice hobby rather than healthcare intervention. However, I’ll go on record as stating the view is changing.
Hydrotherapy provides one of the best starting grounds for the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions, pain, sports injuries, mobility impairments and other disabilities, particularly for people who have degenerative, neurological or post-operative needs. The main reason for this, and the greatest advantage of working in water, is buoyancy.
Buoyancy is the floating and weightless sensation we feel when we get into a bath, swimming pool or summertime dip in the sea. Buoyancy is the upward thrust exerted by water that pushes against our body which means that we experience less pressure and stress through our joints, muscles and ligaments compared to being on land. Because of this quality when movements and exercises are performed in water individuals often experience less or no pain.
This unique environment means that it’s possible to exercise, strengthen and train muscles, ligaments and joints of the body in a way that isn’t possible on land. For some people, this may be the opportunity to exercise areas of the body in ways which have not been possible for weeks, months or years; working in water can provide the building blocks needed for the road to recovery, treatment and management. This is part of the reason why hydrotherapy is sometimes referred to as a ‘tried everything else option’, because working in water is within the capabilities of almost everyone and if nothing else, it’s enjoyable to float weightlessly in soothing warm water.
But that’s where this antiquated perception is no longer holding up.
Yes…. Working in warm water can be a relaxing and soothing experience, and on those credentials alone supports the recommendation of hydrotherapy, but if that was the only case for hydrotherapy then a spa day might be more appropriate.
There is another important advantage to working in water - resistance.
Water resistance offers 12 times more resistance than air, it’s what we feel pushing against us when we move an arm or leg through water. It’s this property of water that makes toning muscles, building strength and working on cardio fitness faster and more effective in the pool than on dry land. Plus, with buoyancy placing less stress through joints, we can train and exercise harder with less pain, less aggravation and vastly reducing the risk of injury.
Throughout the world of elite sport, training in water has become the essential training and performance component for athletes from top runners to premiership footballers. It enables them to train and regain strength while protecting their joints. Performing equivalent land-exercises in water will take around 30% more effort meaning that aquatic rehabilitation and exercising can be made challenging for each individual person which will have a direct impact on their strength, balance and endurance on land. More importantly, athletes and sports professionals are using hydrotherapy and aquatic rehabilitation as part of their injury management as it enables them to recover sooner and return to play faster.
The physiological effects experienced by everyone during water immersion are what makes aquatic exercise the ideal training environment. Hydrostatic pressure on the body assists blood flow return to the heart. As the heart doesn’t have to work as hard for blood to circulate the whole body, the heart can operate more efficiently, so heart rates goes down as does blood pressure. What this means, is the body can work harder in water more effectively using oxygen to create energy which means that muscle strengthening is much more effective in water.
The goal of Hydrotherapy is to work towards more challenging aquatic exercises and progress to land-based programmes. Yet, due to the ease of aquatic rehabilitation, everyone can begin a programme from their own starting point, wherever that may be.
- Less Impact – Reducing the weight and stress through joints
- More Resistance – With greater resistance than air, movements in any direction strengthens and tones muscle
- Greater Muscle Recruitment – Working in water challenges the body to balance and move in dynamics ways requiring the engagement and recruitment of muscle groups and patterns in ways not possible on land
- Greater Circulation – During warm water submersion the body has greater blood flow which provide the basis for faster muscle, ligament and tissue healing
- Less Injury – Less pressure through joints and no hard floor to fall on means that aquatic exercise and rehabilitation has fewer risks than high-energy and cardio exercises on land
- Reduced Swelling – Hydrostatic pressure reduces swelling secondary to exercises reducing pain and stiffness during and after pool sessions
- Aquatic exercise and rehabilitation is accessible to all for the treatment, management and prevention of a wide range of musculoskeletal and health conditions. However, through suitable progression it can be more challenging than any exercise and rehabilitation programme on land that would test even the most elite of athletes!
For any further questions or queries on this topic drop an email to Ben at
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