Lower Back Pain

Discussion in 'The Rink' started by Slick, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. Slick

    Slick Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Mechanical Engineer
    Location:
    Western Mass
    I haven't been playing hockey that long (2nd month), but I notice I get really bad lower back pains both when I'm playing and for hours after the game. It causes me to get a bench change quicker than I would like. Is this because I haven't been playing that long, or is it due to the way I'm playing. I've been told I crouch down when I play, and I think its because I hold my lower hand down to low on the stick.

    Does anyone else have this problem or can tell me what I can do to relieve myself from some of the pain? Is the way I'm holding the stick the whole problem? I'm running out of Icy Hot...
     
  2. mooseOAK*

    mooseOAK* Guest

    Sit ups are good for strengthening your lower back muscles. That is where I would start before changing the way that you are skating or holding your stick.
     
  3. weezman

    weezman Guest

    If you're being told to crouch down more, you may be bending your back instead of bending your knees when you skate. This would definitely cause back pain. If that's the case, work on bending your knees more when you skate. Also, you don't need to keep your bottom hand too low on the stick until you are planning/going to shoot.

    Hope this helps. To back moose up, situps are a good idea regardless of whether you play hockey or not. :D

    Edit: I just noticed I misread the part about crouching. Still, bending at the waist instead of the knees during skating can cause a lot of back pain. In the pre-game skate, try to check your skating style.
     
  4. sc37

    sc37 Registered User

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2006
    Messages:
    1,577
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    OH-IO
    Home Page:
    Well for me...I skate hunched over and use a short stick so I lean and don't really play straight up. My back used to hurt...maybe I've improved my technique or just gotten used it it.

    But I do know that I upped my back presses when I'm at the gym. Look for the lower back machine. So maybe it's a combination of that, technique, and familiarity with my muscles.
     
  5. Slick

    Slick Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Mechanical Engineer
    Location:
    Western Mass
    I'll start with the sit ups tomorrow....uuughhhh

    Thanks for the help guys. I hope things improve. sc, when you say short how short are you using? Chest height?
     
  6. tinyzombies

    tinyzombies Registered User

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    13,029
    Likes Received:
    89
    Trophy Points:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Calif. via Montreal
    Stretching out your legs (quads, hams, calves) before and after games helps. Don't stretch too much before the game, just enough to loosen.

    And, yeah, like the other poster says, strengthen your core muscles.
     
  7. Polska

    Polska Registered User

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    Messages:
    411
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Vancouver
    I think it's mostly your technique, not core strength. I would focus on weezman's advice. Sounds like you crouch over your stick quite and bit and maybe use it as a cruch, which may be why you hold your bottom hand so low. Focus on keeping your weight on your legs and bending your knees to get lower to the ground, not your back. You could have all the core strength in the world but without proper technique your back will continue to hurt.
     
  8. sc37

    sc37 Registered User

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2006
    Messages:
    1,577
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    OH-IO
    Home Page:
    I'm 5'11"-6' and use a stick that comes up to mid-neck...Adam's Apple. Pretty much a standard shaft with like 3"-4" chopped off or the end plug removed.
     
  9. triggrman

    triggrman Registered User

    Joined:
    May 8, 2002
    Messages:
    24,441
    Likes Received:
    562
    Trophy Points:
    215
    Location:
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Home Page:
    I think he's probably bent over too much trying to keep his balance. As his skating improves the pain will go away.
     
  10. Icer

    Icer Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2004
    Messages:
    160
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I used to have the same problem with my lower back. Get yourself a fitness ball and try some of these. Also, stretch out your lower back before you skate. I use a yoga pose called the cobra.
     
  11. Neely08

    Neely08 Registered User

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2006
    Messages:
    18,842
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    North of Boston
    Don't mess around with your back!

    Listen to the guy that said sit-ups and crunches. Work your lowers too...flutter kicks and raises.

    Strengthen your hamstrings.

    Definately check you aren't bending foward too much, no more than 40 degrees. If you are, you're not only asking too much of your back, but killing the potential of your skating and developing bad habits as well.
     
  12. night-timer

    night-timer Registered User

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2006
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Did you overcome this problem? I had the same problem when I began playing. The lower back muscles will get stronger with practice and the pain will eventually go.

    I guess skating is an odd posture to get used to. Also remember the importance of bending the knees and ankles rather than merely leaning forward at the waist.
     
  13. Grave77digger

    Grave77digger Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2004
    Messages:
    2,579
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Home Page:
    I had this problem as weel when 1st startting but it went away with practice
     
  14. FutureConsiderations

    FutureConsiderations Registered User

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2005
    Messages:
    20,449
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Brookline, MA
    Definitely - a good exercise to strengthen your core is to lay on your stomach with your toes on the ground and putting your forearms on the ground with your elbows directly underneath your shoulders. You may want to use a mirror for the first time you do this because you need to keep your back completely straight in this plank position and hold it there. For beginners, try 30-45 seconds. When you build up to 90-120 seconds, you'll have noticed a vast improvement in your core without upsetting your stomach via sit-ups or obliques (which are also very good).

    Also, when I stretch on the ice, I put one leg up on the boards by the bench and lean into it to stretch the legs. Then for the back, I keep my leg in that position, but my back lean the other way - away from your leg. You'll feel it stretch your groin and back, but just be careful not to over-stretch. This alleviates a lot of back pain I have during games.
     
  15. Greeneye

    Greeneye Registered User

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Messages:
    3,854
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    86
    Location:
    Golden, CO
    I used to have the same problem. I fractured a vertebrae in 2000 and I know back pain. You have to strengthen you back. I went to the gym and did back exercises 2-3x a week. You also want to stretch your hamstring, a tight hammy will pull on your lower back.
     
  16. Slick

    Slick Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Mechanical Engineer
    Location:
    Western Mass
    Played again this week for the first time since around March. First thing I noticed the day after was the all-too-familiar back pain. I searched to find the thread to remind myself of the tips. I've been going to the gym but haven't concentrated enough on my lower back. I'll give it a shot, and try and correct my posture early on this year before it gets bad again. Cheers.
     
  17. Aeryn

    Aeryn Registered User

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2006
    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I don't play (yet ;)) but I've got to agree with Icer and recommend yoga. Yeah, it's got a chick/new age stigma, but if you give it a try I guarantee you will see (feel) positive results.

    Good luck!
     
  18. MikeD

    MikeD Registered User

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,066
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Machinist
    Location:
    Buffalo NY
    Home Page:
    I would bet that the root cause is strength related. Check out http://back.com/articles-exercises.html for some great work outs to target the core body and back. Sit-ups are NOT a good choice.
     
  19. Greeneye

    Greeneye Registered User

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Messages:
    3,854
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    86
    Location:
    Golden, CO
    yoga is awesome, i love it...and yes I am the only guy in my class.
     
  20. Slick

    Slick Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Mechanical Engineer
    Location:
    Western Mass
    My girlfriend took a Yoga class, maybe I'll have her teach me something. Plus I get an excuse to watch her stretch. Giggity!
     
  21. VisionQuest*

    VisionQuest* Guest

    Could it be sciatica?
     
  22. jcoldwell

    jcoldwell Registered User

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2004
    Messages:
    1,070
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ok guys, I am a massage therapy student, and I know that for low back pain, it isn't neccessarily his abs or muscles in his low back (quadratis laborum, lattisimus dorsi), it could be his legs giving him the problem. Like a few posters said, try stretching and strengthening your hamstrings, quads, and your abductors, and adductors. It could be that you have tight hamstrings, quads ab/adductors.

    It could also be how you are bending over at the waist instead of bending at the knees.
     
  23. Slick

    Slick Registered User

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    733
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Mechanical Engineer
    Location:
    Western Mass
    I believe this one is the problem. Though I have "chicken legs", I do work them out at the gym and still have the same pain. I really need to get someone to tell me how bad my posture is when playing and go from their, or try and take a more conscious approach to it while playing. I'll be back on the ice next week and go from there.
     
  24. bayrider

    bayrider Registered User

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    Messages:
    599
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Montreal
    Are your skates on tight?
     
  25. Kritter471

    Kritter471 Registered User

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2005
    Messages:
    7,714
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    Staff Writer
    Location:
    Dallas
    When I had some back pain issues, my instructor got me to figure out exactly where it hurt.

    If it's the small of your back and it occurs 1-2 days after you skate, he said it's most likely that your hamstrings are too tight. Hamstrings cramping/pulling pulls your glutes our of alignment which puts a lot of strain on your lower back.

    It makes a lot of sense to me, since there aren't that many muscles in your lower back, but your hamstrings are major muscle groups that you use a whole lot in hockey, especially if you've got your knees bent in the proper position. Your hamstrings are essential to locking you into a skating crouch, and if they haven't been used in a while, it can make your back really, really sore.

    Once I started focusing on the strength and, most importantly, flexibility in my hamstrings, almost all of my back problems went away.
     

Share This Page

monitoring_string = "358c248ada348a047a4b9bb27a146148"