Got Back Pain? Think about this potential cause.

People that have suffered from back pain have most likely tried a thing or two to help get rid of their pain.  Maybe some stretches, yoga, physical therapy, core exercises or chiropractic. However, if your back pain keeps coming back or just doesn’t seem to get better with the things you have already tried, there could be another cause of your pain…your pelvic floor!

How does pelvic floor dysfunction cause back pain?

First, the pelvic floor is a main stabilizer of the pelvis and spine.  If it is dysfunctional, meaning weak, uncoordinated, or tight, then it is not able to stabilize the back as well.  This can lead to too much motion or incorrect motion, ultimately leading to back pain.

Second, if the pelvic floor muscles are tight or painful, it can refer pain to the back or abdomen.  Your pelvic floor can have trigger points in it just like any other muscle in your body. These trigger points can refer pain to your back or abdomen making it feel like you have a backache.  Think of your upper trap muscles above your shoulders. Many people experience tightness in these muscles, which can lead to neck pain or even headaches. Have you experienced that before? The pelvic floor muscles work similarly: Trigger points in the pelvic floor may cause you to feel pain in your back.

Third, the pelvic floor muscles work together with the back muscles, diaphragm and abdominal muscles.  If you haven’t done exercises that incorporate all of these muscles, there’s a good chance that they aren’t coordinating well together.  People often isolate muscle groups and only strengthen that one muscle group such as the abdominal or back muscles. However, these muscles can’t work as strongly if you don’t recruit the others listed above.  That’s why it’s important to do exercises that incorporate these multiple muscles in order to gain more strength and stability through the back.

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