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Weak glutes and your lower back pain?

Most of us spend a fair bit of time sitting whether it be at a desk, in the car or on the sofa after a long day at work. While sitting can be relaxing too much of it can cause our gluteal muscles to weaken.

Where are your gluteal muscles?  Also known as your buttocks your gluteal are often the sore part of the ‘lower back’ that people point to when they are showing us where it hurts.

Yes your lower back issue could actually be a buttocks playing up or them not doing their job!

When muscles weaken we recruit other muscles to stabilise joints. If we can’t activate our glutes then our back muscles take over to stabilise our pelvis.  This added strain can result in pain across our lower back.

The good news there are things we can do to strengthen our gluteal muscles, but first it’s handy to work out their current strength.

A quick test of gluteal strength is a “sit to stand”.  

  •     Sit on a firm chair that allows your feet to be placed flat on the floor.
  •     Cross your arms over your chest so you do not use them to push off your thighs.
  •     Stand up then slowly sit back down.

If you are unable to do this you may need to work on strengthening your glutes.

A good exercise for this is a glute bridge.

  • Start by laying on the floor with your knees bent.
  • Slowly push your lower back to the floor and raise your tail-bone to activate your core.
  • Proceed to peel your spine off the floor. 
  • Hold this pose for 2 seconds then slowly return to neutral.

Remember the old saying ‘Use it or Lose it’. This works for muscles too and we don’t have to do a big work out to make a difference.  So take regular breaks from sitting, march on the spot, do a quick lap of the office or the garden, take the stairs instead of the lift, park a bit further away from the shops. 

Every little bit helps gain strength.

If you have any trouble with these or would like to extend yourself further come in for a Bowen or remedial massage treatment and the team will assist you. Click here to find a time that suits you.