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Man having his back checked by a physiotherapy

Fixing Back Pain with Physio

Most people will experience back pain at some point in their life, particularly lower back pain. Back pain can have a major impact on a person’s activities of daily living, not only affecting the ability to participate in everyday tasks, but also a major impact on the ability to work.

The Causes of Back Pain

There are a number of possible causes of back pain. Whilst this may not always be obvious at first investigation, many back injuries are caused by ligament sprains, joint dysfunction and muscular strains. A common cause of back pain is posture, a person’s occupation and a lack of condition. A job which requires a lot of heavy or repetitive lifting or prolonged sitting can contribute to back problems.

Posture: Poor posture when lifting, standing and sitting places unnecessary strain on the spine. This can cause ligaments to overstretch, cause muscle fatigue, and spinal joints and nerves to be placed under pressure and irritated.

Muscle Strain: Injuries to muscles are one of the most common causes of back pain. Poor posture when lifting, taking on heavy loads and muscle fatigue are some common causes.

Ligament Sprains: The ligaments are fibrous bands which limit how much movement is available at each spinal level. If the ligaments are stretched too far or too fast, they can sprain causing swelling and pain. Causes of this can include sports injuries, awkward lifting and car accidents.

Bulging Discs: This is a common injury to the spine’s intervertebral disc. The spinal discs are like shock absorbers in the spine which separate the bony vertebral bodies and allow movement at each spinal level. They also allow room for nerves to travel from the spinal canal to the limbs. Commonly referred to as a slipped disc, a bulging disc can irritate the nerves exiting the spine and result in pain, cramping, numbness, spasms, pins and needles, or leg pain.

Physio for Back Pain

Back physiotherapy is an effective way to treat and prevent lower back pain. The fastest way to recover from back pain is early diagnosis and treatment whenever possible. Back physical therapy treatment will vary between individuals, depending on the specific diagnosis. Physio for back pain aims to:

  • Provide relief from pain
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Restore strength
  • Restore normal range of motion in the spine
  • Restore normal muscle length
  • Provide protection
  • Restore normal function to return to normal daily activities
  • Reduce the risk of recurrence


There is no way to guarantee that you will never experience back pain, however, there are ways to reduce the risk of an injury occurring. People who are physically active and maintain normal muscle strength and flexibility have the best chance of avoiding back injuries. As well as this, by maintaining a healthy posture and keeping up your general strength and condition you will reduce the risk of any back problems.

While many people will experience back pain at some point in their life, back physiotherapy is an effective treatment and prevention method helping you to return to normal daily activities as soon as possible.

Director & Senior Physiotherapist at Integrity Physiotherapy, Leslie Trigg, has over 13 years of experience in clinical practice. He has graduated with a degree in Human Biology (Anatomy and Physiology) from Curtin University in 2001 and later completed a Masters of Physiotherapy in 2007. He has tremendous experience in musculoskeletal, orthopaedic, neurosurgical and sports physiotherapy. In his spare time, he enjoys swimming, listening to music and spending time with his family.