Saturday, November 20, 2010

meditation london

 ordinary person may consider meditation as a worship or prayer. But it is not so. Meditation means awareness. Whatever you do with awareness is meditation. "Watching your breath" is meditation; listening to the birds is meditation. As long as these activities are free from any other distraction to the mind, it is effective meditation.
Meditation is not a technique but a way of life. Meditation means 'a cessation of the thought process' . It describes a state of consciousness, when the mind is free of scattered thoughts and various patterns . The observer (one who is doing meditation) realizes that all the activity of the mind is reduced to one.
A Tibetan Lama was being monitored on a brain scan machine by a scientist wishing to test physiimgresological functions during deep meditation. The scientist said - "Very good Sir. The machine shows that you are able to go very deep in brain relaxation, and that validates your meditation". "No", said the Lama, "This (pointing to his brain) validates the machine!".
These days it is commonly understood to mean some form of spiritual practice where one sits down with eyes closed and empties the mind to attain inner peace, relaxation or even an experience of God. Some people use the term as "my gardening is my meditation" or for jogging or art or music, hence creating confusion or misunderstanding.
The word meditation, is derived from two Latin words : meditari(to think, to dwell upon, to exercise the mind) and mederi (to heal). Its Sanskrit derivation 'medha' means wisdom.
Many years ago meditation was considered something just not meant for modern people, but now it has become very popular with all types of people. Published scientific and medical evidence has proved its benefits, but it still needs to be much understood.
Traditionally, the classical yoga texts, describe that to attain true states of meditation one must go through several stages. After the necessary preparation of personal and social code, physical position, breath control, and relaxation come the more advanced stages of concentration, contemplation, and then ultimately absorption. But that does not mean that one must perfect any one stage before moving onto the next. The Integral yoga approach is simultaneous application of a little of all stages together.
Commonly today, people can mean any one of these stages when they refer to the term meditation. Some schools only teach concentration techniques, some relaxation, and others teach free form contemplative activities like just sitting and awaiting absorption. Some call it meditation without giving credence to yoga for fear of being branded 'eastern'. But yoga is not something eastern or western as it is universal in its approach and application.
With regular practice of a balanced series of techniques, the energy of the body and mind can be liberated and the quality of consciousness can be expanded. This is not a subjective claim but is now being investigated by the scientists and being shown by an empirical fact.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Breathing patterns london

Breathing london

Breathing Mechanics
Breathing Sequencing, Balancing, Patterns and .
Hyperventilation is in some ways a maladaptive response to stress. It is also caused by poorly coordinated unbalanced breathing. It is also a partial misnomer as it is often occurs when breathing is improving. Where does YOUR situation fit in here?

Faster (than you are accustomed to) breathing is mostly looked upon by the western medical community as "hyperventilation".  Hyperventilation carries a bias of being the wrong way to breathe; there is an illness connotation to it.   That is largely because  medical science does not clearly differentiate between healthy fast and unhealthy fast breathing. 

There are different types or qualities of fast or forced deeper breathing. I call the good kind hyper-inhalation, or balanced deeper-easier-smoother-grounded-faster breathing. This is the relaxing and energizing breathing such as from our disord
Bad breathing is over-stimulation (high chest dominant).  When the faster breathing  is predominately chest it can still be somewhat appropriate but only in the sense that it resolves an immediate emergency  and then reverts back to healthy slower deeper easier balanced breathing as soon as the emergency is over. Within seconds to a few minutes hopefully.  Wild animals seem to do that (adapt and recover) much better then most humans but humans can be trained to adapt by developing their breathing in optimal fashion.
One form of breathing pattern disorder is when one takes quick deep or shallow dominant high-chest in-breaths. These over- stimulate the nervous system and engage the reptilian (survival) portion of the human brain.  Most gas exchange perspectives say hyperventilation sharply reduces the level of carbon dioxide in the blood.  I see this as important in many ways and misleading in others. 
I borrowed the following (italics) more scientific explanation of hyperventilation from a colleague. I will announce him and his company sometime in the not too distant future. He is doing some very, very special work.
"Overbreathing* means bringing about carbon dioxide (CO2) deficit in the blood (i.e., hypocapnia) through excessive ventilation (increased “minute volume”) during rapid, deep, and dysrhythmic breathing, a condition that may result in debilitating short-term and long-term physical and psychological complaints and symptoms.  The slight shifts in CO2 chemistry associated with overbreathing may cause physiological changes such as hypoxia (oxygen deficit), cerebral vasoconstriction (brain), coronary constriction (heart), blood and extracellular alkalosis (increased pH), cerebral glucose deficit, ischemia (localized anemia), buffer depletion (bicarbonates), bronchial constriction, gut constriction, calcium imbalance, magnesium deficiency, and muscle fatigue, spasm (tetany), and pain"
*Note: “Overbreathing” is a behavior leading to the physiological condition known as hypocapnea, i.e., carbon dioxide deficit.  “Hyperventilation,” although nomenclature synonymous with hypocapnea in physiological terms, is often used as a clinical term to describe a controversial psychophysiologic “syndrome” implicated in panic disorder and other clinical complaints."
In other words, no matter how much oxygen we may breathe into our lungs, if the O2 is taken in in a certain way then our sympathetic nervous system will dominate, constrict the blood vessels in the brain and our body will experience a shortage of oxygen.  It's like the old saying "the hurrier I go the behinder I get".  STRESS is a key word here.
A severe asthma attack is one example of this. Panic attacks and aspects of many seizures are as well. The lack of oxygen and or increased carbon dioxide switches on the sympathetic nervous system which makes us tense, anxious and potentially irritable.  So in some sense we need to become more tolerable to increased levels of CO2. 
I partially disagree with the gas exchange over-breathing-carbon-dioxide-is-the-major-marker perspective.  My research and experience leads me to believe that the primary issue  is more about the way the nervous system is stimulated, ie., whether parasympathic/abdominal, breathing, or sympathetic, high chest breathing is engaged.  And the speed of that.

I have observed people breathing intensely for hours without any signs of distress,  but rather with signs of bliss and joy.  The key to "over-breathing" is more about chest or belly breath dominated balance.  The way they take the breathing stimulates the ANS in a good way or a bad way or something in between.  CO2 levels are influenced this way, but they are not always the dominant theme like the CO2 gas exchange proponents seem to believe. When it comes to breathing mechanics CO2 is the effect, not the cause. 

Our evolution and survival often necessitated having fast responses. The shortest distance between two points is the straight line connecting them. High chest dominated "sympathetic" breathing causes constriction and what I call "hyper vigilance"; a stronger and physically closer  connection to the reptilian survival brain.  Abdominal breathing invites expansion and increased energy toleration and is tied into the creative process (think alpha waves).  It has much more of the vagus (parasympathetic-rest-digest-heal ) nerve action engaged with it and allows for the neo-cortex as well as parasympathetic relaxation response to "buffer" the survival instinct. 
High chest breathing generally hyper-stimulates, causes increased breathing rate, lowers blood CO2 amount and exacerbates nervous system distress.  It causes blood vessel constriction and according to basic science as interpreted by Dr. Peter Litchfield makes O2 less transferable to the cellular system and your brain.  Once the high-chest dominant breath ceases, adaptations need to occur to raise CO2 levels that dilate vessels to allow for replenishment of CO2 balance. According to today's accepted science optimal oxygen uptake is not possible without proper CO2 presence.  Hmmmm.
As an aside, we need to remember that sometimes it is good to be ungrounded and unbalanced as with being able to laugh or cry wholeheartedly, change one's rigidity, one's attitude and or achieve quantum shifts in awareness and ability by altering one's emotional anatomy.  When done in a healthy way, it will help to  change sympathetic/parasympathetic balance toward more harmonious levels. Parasympathetic response also relates to one's balanced grounded power base. Sympathetic enervation can be fun or excitement which is often good ( zealotry and hyperbole are examples of excitement or fun without seemingly realistic parasympathetic, neocortical/rational accessed reality checks and physical groundedness).  
Generally, parasympathetic enervation accompanies relaxation and lessened activity such as rest digest and heal.  Sympathetic relates to action, anxiety, fight/flight/freeze/fake it, fumble and FUN. FUN is a strong sympathetic enervation that to my way of thinking is balanced with enough parasympathetic enervation. 
There are other relevant influences towards hyperventilation such as nutrition and toxicity that veers one toward anxiety or confusion.  But, barring congenital nutritional/toxicity considerations,  it is still only when sympathetic enervation becomes dominant  without the proper amount of parasympathetic enervation, that anxiety states occur to invite hyper constriction of blood vessels and signs of overbreathing/hyperventilation. I am discouraged with the use of  the "overbreathing" word as it implies that breathing more is bad. It is not about QUANTITY, it is BALANCE that is the key. Sympathetic Dominant Deep Breathing or SDDB is the label I believe should be used to describe hyperventilation. 
Nutrition and toxicity aside, low CO2 caused vasoconstriction does not happen so much or at all when the parasympathetic nervous system is strong enough to maintain nervous system parasympathetic dominated balance. Another way this manifests in real living conditions is with maintaining reasonably relaxed self control and centering during extreme states of stress or  "courage under fire". Ahhhhh! -- Insights from martial arts.
"HyperINHALATION" or charged breathing as opposed to "quiet" breathing is a more objective way to look at the good kind of increased breathing, ie,  depth and rate, which focuses on the nervous system as opposed to just  CO2/O2 relationship which is the effect and not the cause.
To re-emphasize, having watched over a million breaths of advanced breathing work clients, I have observed -with the help of a pulse oxymeter, that quick-deep or quick-shallow breathing, if dominated by belly, back and side breathing, most often increases the level of oxygen in our blood. By gas exchange standards, this would seem to reduce the CO2 ratios, invite constriction and inhibit O2 transfer into the cells but this MAY or MAY NOT not occur depending upon how well the breather is able to relax and stay dominant parasympathetic. Key factors are how well they adapt, tolerate or become accustomed to the increase in physical energy (chi, prana, Qi, pneuma etc). 
Dominant front, side and back abdominal breaths allow the nervous system to remain calm and to stay out of the potentially vaso-constrictive "anxiety/survival responses", CO2 depletion, and high chest, sympathetic breathing pattern.  We get more energized and in touch with our power without being overwhelmed with oxygen deprivation. The key is HOW this occurs and that is a lot of what this program attempts to improve.
To repeat.  
It is not over-breathing which is a general term like hyperventilation. It is too much high chest breathing without enough lower abdominal breathing.  There is a HUGE difference between over-breathing parasympathetic (abdominal) and over-breathing sympathetically. It is not the over-breathing. It is the way we over-breathe, and how we maintain internal and nervous system balance.

AND SO ON.
Certain schools of allopathic  medicine presently lump everything into one word -hyperventilation- which is grossly inadequate. So this prejudice distorts and increases the importance and relevance of carbon dioxide. The effect of carbon  dioxide levels are very important and permit tremendous insight and without them we can fail to help many in need. We must recognize that this is an imbalance that has a cause, and the cause is unbalanced breathing. I steadfastly believe that higher O2 levels and the way we balance them with CO2 levels are primary factors in developing and maintaining internal balance and optimal health..
There are instruments that can easily record the CO2 levels and help gauge therapeutic  progress. I believe that science will support my thesis that a stronger stimulation of the parasympathetic "rest, digest and heal" aspect of the nervous system, produces  "safe" increased levels of oxygen, peptides, endorphins and subtle energies of the various forms of what the ancient - and modern -breathing practitioners call chi, ki, prana, pneuma, spiritus etc. The arteries, including the carotid arteries going to the brain, remain more open,  thus allowing increased flow of energized blood throughout the brain and body.  It feels great, sometimes even ecstatic.  Gospel singing is an example of this experience, as well as some forms of chanting, and transformational breath work.
Increased Energy Developed SafelyBreathing practices are most often safe when the body’s sensing mechanisms are engaged on a moment to moment basis to monitor against excessive or inappropriate breathing related energy.  But many people are so far out of balance that the "breather"  may have forgotten about or never have felt (due to traumatic birthing or infancy)  a  state of wholeness and balance.  This puts practices such as singing or voice training and the teachers that comprise this population in a completely new light and shows how singing can be not only a performance-personal growth tool, but a health modality as well.
Though they are often monumentally powerful healing and energy paradigms, many Chi Kung and Pranayama teachers are often at a disadvantage in teaching their art forms because their students may be lacking fundamental, internal breathing balance and coordination, plus subtle aspects of feeling and kinesthetic feedback, and do not internally sense themselves in ways familiar to these paradigms. Making sound can give tremendous insight to this missing link, and the vocal/speech trainer becomes an integral part of the Optimal Breathing paradigm.

Signs of possible hyperventilation are: shortness of breath
 breathlessness
 chest tightness & pressure
 chest pain
  feelings of suffocation
  sweaty palms
  cold hands
  tingling of the skin
  numbness
  heart palpitations
 irregular heart beats
  anxiety
like to know more go to www.activebr

Breathing london

Breathing Mechanics
Breathing Sequencing, Balancing, Patterns and .
Hyperventilation is in some ways a maladaptive response to stress. It is also caused by poorly coordinated unbalanced breathing. It is also a partial misnomer as it is often occurs when breathing is improving. Where does YOUR situation fit in here?

Faster (than you are accustomed to) breathing is mostly looked upon by the western medical community as "hyperventilation".  Hyperventilation carries a bias of being the wrong way to breathe; there is an illness connotation to it.   That is largely because  medical science does not clearly differentiate between healthy fast and unhealthy fast breathing. 

There are different types or qualities of fast or forced deeper breathing. I call the good kind hyper-inhalation, or balanced deeper-easier-smoother-grounded-faster breathing. This is the relaxing and energizing breathing such as from our disord
Bad breathing is over-stimulation (high chest dominant).  When the faster breathing  is predominately chest it can still be somewhat appropriate but only in the sense that it resolves an immediate emergency  and then reverts back to healthy slower deeper easier balanced breathing as soon as the emergency is over. Within seconds to a few minutes hopefully.  Wild animals seem to do that (adapt and recover) much better then most humans but humans can be trained to adapt by developing their breathing in optimal fashion.
One form of breathing pattern disorder is when one takes quick deep or shallow dominant high-chest in-breaths. These over- stimulate the nervous system and engage the reptilian (survival) portion of the human brain.  Most gas exchange perspectives say hyperventilation sharply reduces the level of carbon dioxide in the blood.  I see this as important in many ways and misleading in others. 
I borrowed the following (italics) more scientific explanation of hyperventilation from a colleague. I will announce him and his company sometime in the not too distant future. He is doing some very, very special work.
"Overbreathing* means bringing about carbon dioxide (CO2) deficit in the blood (i.e., hypocapnia) through excessive ventilation (increased “minute volume”) during rapid, deep, and dysrhythmic breathing, a condition that may result in debilitating short-term and long-term physical and psychological complaints and symptoms.  The slight shifts in CO2 chemistry associated with overbreathing may cause physiological changes such as hypoxia (oxygen deficit), cerebral vasoconstriction (brain), coronary constriction (heart), blood and extracellular alkalosis (increased pH), cerebral glucose deficit, ischemia (localized anemia), buffer depletion (bicarbonates), bronchial constriction, gut constriction, calcium imbalance, magnesium deficiency, and muscle fatigue, spasm (tetany), and pain"
*Note: “Overbreathing” is a behavior leading to the physiological condition known as hypocapnea, i.e., carbon dioxide deficit.  “Hyperventilation,” although nomenclature synonymous with hypocapnea in physiological terms, is often used as a clinical term to describe a controversial psychophysiologic “syndrome” implicated in panic disorder and other clinical complaints."
In other words, no matter how much oxygen we may breathe into our lungs, if the O2 is taken in in a certain way then our sympathetic nervous system will dominate, constrict the blood vessels in the brain and our body will experience a shortage of oxygen.  It's like the old saying "the hurrier I go the behinder I get".  STRESS is a key word here.
A severe asthma attack is one example of this. Panic attacks and aspects of many seizures are as well. The lack of oxygen and or increased carbon dioxide switches on the sympathetic nervous system which makes us tense, anxious and potentially irritable.  So in some sense we need to become more tolerable to increased levels of CO2. 
I partially disagree with the gas exchange over-breathing-carbon-dioxide-is-the-major-marker perspective.  My research and experience leads me to believe that the primary issue  is more about the way the nervous system is stimulated, ie., whether parasympathic/abdominal, breathing, or sympathetic, high chest breathing is engaged.  And the speed of that.

I have observed people breathing intensely for hours without any signs of distress,  but rather with signs of bliss and joy.  The key to "over-breathing" is more about chest or belly breath dominated balance.  The way they take the breathing stimulates the ANS in a good way or a bad way or something in between.  CO2 levels are influenced this way, but they are not always the dominant theme like the CO2 gas exchange proponents seem to believe. When it comes to breathing mechanics CO2 is the effect, not the cause. 

Our evolution and survival often necessitated having fast responses. The shortest distance between two points is the straight line connecting them. High chest dominated "sympathetic" breathing causes constriction and what I call "hyper vigilance"; a stronger and physically closer  connection to the reptilian survival brain.  Abdominal breathing invites expansion and increased energy toleration and is tied into the creative process (think alpha waves).  It has much more of the vagus (parasympathetic-rest-digest-heal ) nerve action engaged with it and allows for the neo-cortex as well as parasympathetic relaxation response to "buffer" the survival instinct. 
High chest breathing generally hyper-stimulates, causes increased breathing rate, lowers blood CO2 amount and exacerbates nervous system distress.  It causes blood vessel constriction and according to basic science as interpreted by Dr. Peter Litchfield makes O2 less transferable to the cellular system and your brain.  Once the high-chest dominant breath ceases, adaptations need to occur to raise CO2 levels that dilate vessels to allow for replenishment of CO2 balance. According to today's accepted science optimal oxygen uptake is not possible without proper CO2 presence.  Hmmmm.
As an aside, we need to remember that sometimes it is good to be ungrounded and unbalanced as with being able to laugh or cry wholeheartedly, change one's rigidity, one's attitude and or achieve quantum shifts in awareness and ability by altering one's emotional anatomy.  When done in a healthy way, it will help to  change sympathetic/parasympathetic balance toward more harmonious levels. Parasympathetic response also relates to one's balanced grounded power base. Sympathetic enervation can be fun or excitement which is often good ( zealotry and hyperbole are examples of excitement or fun without seemingly realistic parasympathetic, neocortical/rational accessed reality checks and physical groundedness).  
Generally, parasympathetic enervation accompanies relaxation and lessened activity such as rest digest and heal.  Sympathetic relates to action, anxiety, fight/flight/freeze/fake it, fumble and FUN. FUN is a strong sympathetic enervation that to my way of thinking is balanced with enough parasympathetic enervation. 
There are other relevant influences towards hyperventilation such as nutrition and toxicity that veers one toward anxiety or confusion.  But, barring congenital nutritional/toxicity considerations,  it is still only when sympathetic enervation becomes dominant  without the proper amount of parasympathetic enervation, that anxiety states occur to invite hyper constriction of blood vessels and signs of overbreathing/hyperventilation. I am discouraged with the use of  the "overbreathing" word as it implies that breathing more is bad. It is not about QUANTITY, it is BALANCE that is the key. Sympathetic Dominant Deep Breathing or SDDB is the label I believe should be used to describe hyperventilation. 
Nutrition and toxicity aside, low CO2 caused vasoconstriction does not happen so much or at all when the parasympathetic nervous system is strong enough to maintain nervous system parasympathetic dominated balance. Another way this manifests in real living conditions is with maintaining reasonably relaxed self control and centering during extreme states of stress or  "courage under fire". Ahhhhh! -- Insights from martial arts.
"HyperINHALATION" or charged breathing as opposed to "quiet" breathing is a more objective way to look at the good kind of increased breathing, ie,  depth and rate, which focuses on the nervous system as opposed to just  CO2/O2 relationship which is the effect and not the cause.
To re-emphasize, having watched over a million breaths of advanced breathing work clients, I have observed -with the help of a pulse oxymeter, that quick-deep or quick-shallow breathing, if dominated by belly, back and side breathing, most often increases the level of oxygen in our blood. By gas exchange standards, this would seem to reduce the CO2 ratios, invite constriction and inhibit O2 transfer into the cells but this MAY or MAY NOT not occur depending upon how well the breather is able to relax and stay dominant parasympathetic. Key factors are how well they adapt, tolerate or become accustomed to the increase in physical energy (chi, prana, Qi, pneuma etc). 
Dominant front, side and back abdominal breaths allow the nervous system to remain calm and to stay out of the potentially vaso-constrictive "anxiety/survival responses", CO2 depletion, and high chest, sympathetic breathing pattern.  We get more energized and in touch with our power without being overwhelmed with oxygen deprivation. The key is HOW this occurs and that is a lot of what this program attempts to improve.
To repeat.  
It is not over-breathing which is a general term like hyperventilation. It is too much high chest breathing without enough lower abdominal breathing.  There is a HUGE difference between over-breathing parasympathetic (abdominal) and over-breathing sympathetically. It is not the over-breathing. It is the way we over-breathe, and how we maintain internal and nervous system balance.

AND SO ON.
Certain schools of allopathic  medicine presently lump everything into one word -hyperventilation- which is grossly inadequate. So this prejudice distorts and increases the importance and relevance of carbon dioxide. The effect of carbon  dioxide levels are very important and permit tremendous insight and without them we can fail to help many in need. We must recognize that this is an imbalance that has a cause, and the cause is unbalanced breathing. I steadfastly believe that higher O2 levels and the way we balance them with CO2 levels are primary factors in developing and maintaining internal balance and optimal health..
There are instruments that can easily record the CO2 levels and help gauge therapeutic  progress. I believe that science will support my thesis that a stronger stimulation of the parasympathetic "rest, digest and heal" aspect of the nervous system, produces  "safe" increased levels of oxygen, peptides, endorphins and subtle energies of the various forms of what the ancient - and modern -breathing practitioners call chi, ki, prana, pneuma, spiritus etc. The arteries, including the carotid arteries going to the brain, remain more open,  thus allowing increased flow of energized blood throughout the brain and body.  It feels great, sometimes even ecstatic.  Gospel singing is an example of this experience, as well as some forms of chanting, and transformational breath work.
Increased Energy Developed SafelyBreathing practices are most often safe when the body’s sensing mechanisms are engaged on a moment to moment basis to monitor against excessive or inappropriate breathing related energy.  But many people are so far out of balance that the "breather"  may have forgotten about or never have felt (due to traumatic birthing or infancy)  a  state of wholeness and balance.  This puts practices such as singing or voice training and the teachers that comprise this population in a completely new light and shows how singing can be not only a performance-personal growth tool, but a health modality as well.
Though they are often monumentally powerful healing and energy paradigms, many Chi Kung and Pranayama teachers are often at a disadvantage in teaching their art forms because their students may be lacking fundamental, internal breathing balance and coordination, plus subtle aspects of feeling and kinesthetic feedback, and do not internally sense themselves in ways familiar to these paradigms. Making sound can give tremendous insight to this missing link, and the vocal/speech trainer becomes an integral part of the Optimal Breathing paradigm.
Personal trainer London - Scott Bryant


Signs of possible hyperventilation are: shortness of breath
 breathlessness
 chest tightness & pressure
 chest pain
  feelings of suffocation
  sweaty palms
  cold hands
  tingling of the skin
  numbness
  heart palpitations
 irregular heart beats
  anxiety
like to know more go to 
Personal trainer London - Scott Bryant

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

CHEK Practitioner London fitness tips myofascial stretches

back Pain personal trainer


About back pain personal trainer 

Back pain is extremely common - about four in five people are affected at some point in their lifetime. Anyone can get back pain at any age, but it's most common in people between the ages of 35 and 55, or over.
Your back has many interconnecting structures, including bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons. Its main support structure is the spine, which is made up of 24 separate bones called vertebrae, plus the bones of the sacrum and coccyx. Between the vertebrae are discs that act as shock absorbers and allow your spine to bend. Your spinal cord threads down through the central canal of each vertebra, carrying nerves from your brain to the rest of your body.
Illustration of the different parts of the spine
The different parts of the spine
It's often very difficult to know exactly what causes back pain, but it's usually thought to be related to a strain in one of the interconnecting structures in your back, rather than a nerve problem. Back pain caused by a more serious, underlying condition is rare and you're unlikely to be affected unless you are very old or very young.

Symptoms of back pain

If you have low back pain, you may have tension, soreness or stiffness in your lower back area. This pain is often referred to as 'non-specific' back pain and usually improves on its own within a few days.
Back pain may be called either 'acute' or 'chronic' depending on how long your symptoms last. You may have:
  • acute back pain - lasting less than six weeks
  • sub-acute back pain - lasting six weeks to three months
  • chronic back pain - lasting longer than three months
You should see your GP as soon as possible if, as well as back pain, you have:
  • a fever (high temperature)
  • redness or swelling on your back
  • pain down your legs and below your knees
  • numbness or weakness in one or both legs or around your buttocks
  • loss of bladder or bowel control (incontinence)
  • constant pain, particularly at night
  • pain that is getting much worse and is spreading up your spine
These symptoms are known as red flags. It's important to seek medical help for these symptoms to ensure you don't have a more serious, underlying cause for your back pain.

Causes of back pain

For most people with back pain, there isn't any specific, underlying problem or condition that can be identified as the cause of the pain. However, there are a number of factors that can increase your risk of developing back pain, or aggravate it once you have it. These include:
  • standing, sitting or bending down for long periods
  • lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling loads that are too heavy, or going about these tasks in the wrong way
  • having a trip or a fall
  • being stressed or anxious
  • being overweight
  • having poor posture
There may be other, more serious underlying causes of your low back pain, but these are rare. They include:
  • fracture - a crack or break in one of the bones in your back
  • osteoporosis - a condition where bones lose density causing them to become weak, brittle and more likely to break
  • a slipped disc - this is when a disc bulges so far out that it puts pressure on your spinal nerves
  • spinal stenosis - a condition in which the spaces in your spine narrow
  • spondylolithesis - when one of your back bones slips forward and out of position
  • degenerative disc disease - when the discs in your spinal cord gradually become worn down
  • osteoarthritis - a wear-and-tear disease that can particularly affect the joints of your spine
  • rheumatoid arthritis - an inflammatory condition in which your immune system causes inflammation of the lining of your joints and surrounding structures
Low back pain may also be caused by an infection or cancer, but these two causes are very rare.

Diagnosis of back pain

Your GP will usually be able to diagnose low back pain from your symptoms and there will be no need for further tests. If, however, your symptoms don't improve after a few weeks, or you have some red flag symptoms, he or she may refer you to a back clinic to have:
  • an X-ray
  • CT scan (a test that uses X-ray equipment and computer software to create pictures of the inside of your body)
  • an MRI scan (a test that uses magnets and radiowaves to produce images of the inside of the body)
  • blood tests
These tests are used to find out if you have a more specific, underlying cause for your back pain.

Treatment of back pain

If your back pain is non-specific, your GP will recommend you try self-help measures. Alternatively, he or she may prescribe medicines or refer you for physical therapy if your pain is severe or chronic. If, however, your GP suspects you have a specific underlying cause, he or she may refer you to a back clinic or a pain clinic to see if you are suitable to have spinal injections. These are used to find out the exact source of, and also to treat, your back pain but aren't suitable for everyone.

Self-help

There are a number of things you can do to help relieve low back pain.
see a back pain personal trainer london 
  • Stay active and continue your daily activities as normally as you can. Bed rest may actually make low back pain worse, so try to limit the time you spend resting to a minimum.
  • Apply hot or cold packs to the affected area. You can buy specially designed hot and cold packs from most pharmacies. If you prefer, you can apply a cold compress, such as ice or a bag of frozen peas, wrapped in a towel. Don't apply ice directly to your skin as it can damage your skin

Physical therapies

A physiotherapist (a health professional who specialises in maintaining and improving movement and mobility) may be able to help you design a programme to help you exercise and stretch.
Alternatively, your GP may refer you for physical therapy such as physiotherapy, chiropractic treatment or osteopathy (therapies that are given alongside conventional treatments) to help with your back pain. Treatment can involve exercises, posture advice, massage, and techniques known as spinal mobilisation and spinal manipulation. Treatment courses usually last about six to 12 weeks.

Surgery

Back pain, even if it's chronic, can usually be treated or managed successfully, but about one in 10 people have ongoing problems. is really only considered as a last resort if the pain is related to a specific cause.

Complementary therapies

Some people find acupuncture can help relieve low back pain. You may be able to have a course of up to 10 sessions over a 12-week period.
Alternatively, you could try a pain-management programme to help you better deal with and manage your symptoms.
You should always talk to your GP before trying any complementary therapy.

Prevention of back pain

Good back care can greatly reduce your risk of getting low back pain. To look after your back, make sure you:
  •  see a good personal trainer london take regular exercise - walking and swimming are particularly beneficial
  • try to keep your stress levels to a minimum
  • bend from your knees and hips, not your back
  • maintain good posture - keep your shoulders back and don't slouch
  • get a C.H.E.K Practitioner to assement  london 

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