This past month I’ve had an influx of lumbar pain cases. Whilst lumbar pain is a regularity in the clinic, it appeared that 90% of people coming in were coming in for chronic and persistent pain in the lower back that had flared recently.
It comes as no surprise considering the unpredictable and confusing times we’ve been going through.
There are many muscles playing a role in lower back cases, but one I’d like to draw attention to is the Psoas muscle.
This is a large muscle connecting our lumbar vertebrae with the hip bones and flexors.
In a nutshell, side bends, sitting up, twisting and raising the knees are in part controlled by the psoas.
The fascia and soft tissues wrapping these muscles are also connected to the diaphragm and around the Kidneys.
The Psoas has been called the Seat of the Soul and a place where we harbour fears and anxieties, often flaring up when we are feeling unsupported both financially and emotionally, consciously or unconsciously.
Physically, we find an increase in pain and discomfort when we have been sitting for too long. Many are working at desks in front of computers for far too many hours (for financial security), with the core muscles switched off and the flexors switched on.
Slumping, twisting and lateral flexion due to poor muscle strength, inflexibility or bad seating arrangement increases discomfort often occurring on one side.
That seems odd.
The way to address lumbar pain in clinic is to firstly stretch and work the adductor muscles.
It seems odd to come in with pain in your back and to be lying face up being stretched in positions that make you want to cry, however, it is the first stop in the journey.
Often when the psoas throws the lumbar out, the adductor muscles take over and also clench. The psoas attaches to the lesser trochanter, which is now being stretched medially.
Relax the adductors, the flexors then have more range.
The use of cups, moxa, ontake and palpation can then be used on the back to entice the body back into balance.
Stretching, brisk walking, regular brakes from sitting and seeking support where needed are all ways to engage the correct facilities of our body, mind and emotions to keep equilibrium and continue to be at our healthiest and happiest.
Flexibility of body and mind is the major subject when dealing with this area of our body, both physically and energetically (when life deals lemons, always make lemon meringue..;)
Being curious about the state of your welfare will enable you to take steps in maintaining your optimal joy and a regular visit to your favourite shiatsu practitioner never hurts 😉