I see so many clients who have niggling back pain or other hyper tight muscles and while there is never a one size fits all cure, I find in my practice is that helping clients to strengthen their posterior chain does wonders for tweaky aches and pains.
But why? Firstly humans are meant to be active. We are not supposed to be sitting for most of the day (which kills our mind muscle connection with our glutes and shortens our hip flexors). We should be standing and bending and squatting and twisting and walking and running. It’s amazing how frequently I see these natural movement patterns compromised in clients.
A short walk to the car or bus ( then sitting), another short walk to work (then more sitting for hours on end), followed by same in reverse, followed by sofa slouching. This is how many of us lead our lives, day after day. Is it any wonder our muscles go to mush? If you then go out at the weekend on a hike or to do sport, your body doesn’t know how to move properly or which muscles to recruit to perform the movement well, hence pain can develop over time. Sometimes we are bio-mechanically challenged. When we’re younger we develop a movement pattern to get ‘us by’ but with time and age, muscles and tendons tighten due to over use of the wrong ones and not enough use of the right ones. Add to that the weight gain from inactivity and age (we lose muscle year on year after the age of 30) and the whole vicious cycle continues...
Not all is lost though. Proper movement patterns can be restored and posterior chains can be strengthened and activated. Your glutes are your biggest muscle group in the body and often don’t do the lion’s share of the work as they should. This needs to be changed to ensure a healthy strong pain free body. Hamstrings (which are often weak and tight), core ( again often weak, sometimes tight and immobile) and back (erector spinae muscles working overtime to counteract under active glutes long with weak upper and mid back) also need to be strengthened. Hips need to be stabilised to control issues lower down the kinetic chain ,while ankle and foot imbalances need correction.
It’s never an easy or quick fix and some people need a combination of Physio and stretching/ mobility alongside strengthening .
My advice is to address any pain issues with a professional to see what the root cause is, stand more, walk more, address your posture. You can be pain free!