To pick up an object from the ground without hurting your back, especially if the object is heavy, it is advisable to bend down while keeping your back straight. You then bend your knees, legs apart, grab the object, and then push on your legs to stand up, always keeping your back straight.
Well known to people prone to low back pain, this technique would not be the panacea for everyone. A new study from Curtin University in Australia shows that this approach is not for everyone. It was published on July 21, 2021 in the journal Plos ONE.
Researchers have followed people using this technique for more than five years. They then found that people prone to lower back pain were more likely to use this recommended technique, while people without back pain tended not to follow this advice.
However, the research team found that people with low back pain were more likely to bend down with a squat-like posture, buttocks back, slower and more squatting.
For the study, participants had to perform the act of bending down 100 times to pick up boxes of two different weights. “While the two groups (low back pain vs. painless, editor’s note) lifted the boxes using a fairly comparable technique at the end of the 100 lifts, the group with low back pain always showed a tendency to perform a slower and more squatting lift, close to the squat”, commented Nic Saraceni, co-author of the study, in a communicated. “These results are the opposite of what should happen based on existing guidance on correct techniques. [pour soulever un objet]’, he added. Because in view of their way of bending down, people with low back pain should no longer have back pain, since they follow the recommendations.
The researchers believe thata more individualized approach should be put in place to learn how to bend down to pick up an object. Because there are other ways to bend down while keeping your back straight, with less risk of hurting yourself. Examples: put one knee on the ground and put the other at a right angle with the straight back perpendicular to the ground (“knight servant”), or tilt one leg back like a pendulum, keeping his back straight, parallel to the ground when we pick up the object.
Lifting advice doesn’t stand up for everyone.@CurtinUni Professor Nic Saraceni (@NSaraceniPhysio) discusses how his new #research may change back pain #prevention advice. Read more: https://t.co/QScoRN8d9L #CurtinResearch @PeteOSullivanPT @PLOSONE pic.twitter.com/xOxfdkl4wa
— Curtin Media (@CurtinMedia) July 22, 2021