Tebowing and other bad things you can do to your back
Last year, the number of incidents of lower back pain swelled to an all time high. People all around town were walking with their hands gently supporting their backs. The 16th Street Mall looked like a scene from a super hero convention with half the citizens standing akimbo. In March, the problem mysteriously disappeared from Colorado. While scientists were baffled, the matter was quickly discovered again in New York.
The problem? Tebowing.
Tebowing (and other similar postures) has a direct and negative effect on your Psoas (pronounced so-az) muscle.
The psoas is basically a forearm sized muscle in your stomach. It starts just below the bottom rib on your vertebral column and connects to the top of your femur near your hip joint. The psoas muscle helps with the flexion and external rotation of the hip joint. It is a major walking muscle. It helps bend the spine forward and stabilizes the trunk.
When you have poor posture, with your chin tucked toward your chest, back hunched over and feet tucked under you, your psoas is shortened. This can cause an uncommon tilt in your pelvis, compress the joints and discs of your lumbar spine and limits the firing of your glute muscles. It’s a common cause for a back pain.
Massaging your psoas is one of the first things they taught in school. The way we learned to release it is a special brand of torture that involves jamming our fingers in to your stomach. Fortunately, though still slightly uncomfortable, we have since learned gentler ways to release the muscle. A combination of broad pressure and gentle rocking can quickly relieve such afflictions.
Helping relieve psoas related back pain issues on your own is fairly straight forward. Stop slouching. Keep your chin up. When you’re sitting, keep your butt back in your chair and your feet flat on the floor. The psoas is stretched through yoga, and any good physical therapist can show you a few simple stretches and exercises to release your psoas and strengthen your glutes.
The “Manning” posture; Standing up straight and proud, jumping up and down in jubilation, and rotating left and right to high five your friends will help resolve the taxation imposed on your body caused by last year’s Tebowing.