Can Walking Improve Back Pain?

Walking seems like a simple enough activity. I mean we learned to walk before we learned to talk. Right? So how can something as simple and mundane as walking possibly improve your back pain.

Let me answer this question with a story. Many years ago a regular patient came in to see me and said, “Doc. My low back has really been hurting lately. What should I do?”

Now let me give you some background on this person. First, she received spinal adjustments every two weeks. Second, she practiced yoga 4-5 days per week. But, she had a high level job that basically had her sitting all day long.

About the only thing that I could think to tell her was to take a 20-30 minute walk to loosen up the muscles in the low back and hips, improve blood flow and basically just get things moving down there.

Well, she looks at me kinda funny and I say look, I know it sounds stupid, just give it a try. She smiles and leaves.

Two weeks later, I have completely forgotten about the “walking conversation.” But the patient has not. I greet her and she is all smiles. She looks at me and says Doc, you are a genius. And I say, yea I know but what exactly did I do this time.

So she tells me that she has been walking 20 minutes per day since our last visit and her back pain is completely gone and she feels great. I say, “your welcome.”

I want you to understand a couple of points from this story. First, people sit way too much today and it is really bad for your health. Both spinal health and general health.

Second, walking is a simple activity that MOST people can do and just like chiropractic adjustments, the benefits from a 20-30 minute walk are almost unbelievable.

So go for a walk and bring a friend with you. It will be good for your back. Good for your heart. And good for your spirit.

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