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McHenry Back Pain-Preventing Lifting Techniques

Lifting an object off the ground seems like a simple task for most people. It’s a task we do every day mostly without hesitation. OrthoIllinois Chiropractic hears stories every day about how difficult it is to pick something up off the ground or how getting a simple pencil up off the ground triggered the worst back pain. Our McHenry chiropractic patients tell us stories like this! Strengthening the quads with exercise as part of our chiropractic services, and lifting slowly and with a few suggestions in mind can potentially limit stress on the spine.


When it comes to posture, lifting is a notorious risk factor for low back pain. Lifting techniques like the stoop/lifting with the back, squat/lifting with the legs, and semi-squat/a mix of the other two are well-documented. Squat lifting seems to be the one most report is optimal. One set of researchers presented some odd findings though: squat lift training didn’t prevent low back pain and stoop lifting isn’t a risk factor for low back pain. How do these two points figure into appropriate lifting for back pain prevention and management? They proposed that the lifting posture that is proper for each person must be personalized as each lifting posture offers its own biomechanical and kinematic patterns for muscle activation which make certain lifting postures better for certain patients. Researchers explained that stoop lifting was more metabolically efficient and less challenging to the cardiopulmonary system. This set of researchers further recommended working with each individual patient on the proper lifting technique suitable for his/her body and lifting situation using the “calm tissue down, build tissue up, improve work capacity” system. (1) OrthoIllinois Chiropractic usually looks at each of our McHenry chiropractic patients and presents ideas on managing and preventing back pain with exercise and other approaches.


There are a few methods that may support us all when lifting. A special lifting technique known as BATT (a braced arm to thigh, one-handed lifting method to retrieve objects with the dominant hand) substantially decreased low back loading during lifting items of 2 to 10 kg. Trunk flexion angles were significantly reduced. Compressive and anterior-posterior shear forces were significantly lower as well compared with unsupported lifting techniques. (2) That is a simple lifting tip we know our McHenry chiropractic clients|we can all do! Another is lift slowly which is said to lower loads on the lumbar spine. Stoop lifting had a larger lumbar spine lordosis range of motion and created lower total and compressive lumbar loads than squat lifting (except at L5S1 where anterior shear loads were greater) and freestyle lifting. (3) Therefore slow down when lifting. Use your quads to squat lift. (If they’re not very strong, let’s talk about strengthening them!)

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Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. Tyler Lomnicki on The Back Doctors Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson as he discusses care of a man with a disc herniation among other conditions for which The Cox® Technic System of Spinal Pain Management of spinal manipulation assisted in his relief. 

Schedule your McHenry chiropractic appointment with OrthoIllinois Chiropractic today. When simple tasks like lifting objects off the floor become troublesome, know that OrthoIllinois Chiropractic is here to help find a way to make them better and troublefree for you and your spine!

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"This information and website content is not intended to diagnose, guarantee results, or recommend specific treatment or activity. It is designed to educate and inform only. Please consult your physician for a thorough examination leading to a diagnosis and well-planned treatment strategy. See more details on the DISCLAIMER page. Content is reviewed by Dr. James M. Cox I."