Does Santa Have Back Pain?

January 20, 2008

If he doesn’t, he probably will, sooner or later. Santa is a perfect candidate for back problems – he’s overweight. The same holds true for us mere mortals. Sometimes the cause of a back problem is not your back but your front: your “spare tire” may be the cause of your aching back. And the solution to your back problem may not involve pills, surgery or physical therapy.

How Your Back Works

Your spine, or backbone, is the central support of your entire skeletal system. It is designed for strength, to support your body weight, and flexibility, to allow movement. When healthy, your spine is S-shaped with three natural curves. When these curves are in balance, your body weight is evenly distributed. To maintain this alignment, you need to have strong and flexible muscles in your back, legs and abdomen. The abdominal muscles are especially important for support of the spine.

When You’ve Gone To Pot

A potbelly changes the curvature of the back. The stomach pulls the backbone forward, stressing muscles and ligaments and putting pressure on discs. If you have ten extra pounds on your abdomen, you are putting an additional 100-pound strain on your back.

This additional strain occurs because the lower part of your spine is not receiving adequate support from your weakened abdominal muscles. Your back muscles try to maintain the proper spinal balance, but often end up strained or sprained.

Back In Shape

Although excess weight does cause back problems, you can do something about it. Follow a diet and exercise program to maintain a healthy weight and strengthen your muscles. Develop healthy eating habits that work for your. And make exercise an important part of your day.

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