It is highly likely that at some stage in everyones` life, they will experience back pain in some shape or form. You will hear the mention of words like slipped disc, tapped nerve, muscle spasm, sciatica (in the buttock or leg), lumbago, wear and tear, arthritis etc.
The jarring effect of accidents and falls, heavy or incorrect lifting or bending, the wrong form of exercises, poor posture, mental and emotional trauma are all causes of stress and tension to become locked in the muscles of the back.
The muscles and ligaments may tighten in a protective action along the vertebrae which causes irritation to the spinal nerves; resulting in back pain. This can also then be referred along the nerve pathways into the abdomen, groin, hips, legs or feet. Very often, pain in the legs, knees and feet is referred from the lower back. Pain is often felt along the large sciatic nerve, which passes through the pelvis in the buttock area and then down the back of the leg. An individual may also experience the sensations of numbness, tingling or burning where there is a muscle imbalance.
If an individual`s muscles are stressed in the mid or upper back area, the person may experience a nagging ache between the shoulder blades or possibly persistent itching. They may also have a sharp stabbing pain in this area or even in the chest. If the diaphragm muscle is stressed, this may result in indigestion or heartburn, or a feeling of breathlessness.
When the body is stressed, the muscle function may be affected, resulting in stiffness or weakness. The compressive effect that these muscles in the back have may be so severe that they lock up in a protective spasm, pulling the spine sideways or forwards. Muscles may also tighten along the spine due to structural abnormalities in the vertebrae as the body attempt to protect the damaged area.
If the stress has been present for a long time, it may be necessary to release the stored tension in `layers` over a period of time.
Using the clients own reflex response mechanism, the BSR practitioner will identify where the lines and layers of tension exist in a clients body and then gently encourage the muscle imbalances to return to normal function.