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Back Pain Mythbusters

Low back pain is a very common musculoskeletal complaint, however despite how common it is within our society, there are many misconceptions regarding its assessment and management.

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, a union group in the United Kingdom for Physiotherapists, have developed four common myth busters about lower back pain. They are based on what we know from the latest research evidence and clinical practice in the assessment and management of low back pain.

Low Back Pain Myths vs Facts

Myth #1: Moving will make my back pain worse.

People fear twisting and bending but it’s essential to keep moving. Gradually increase how much you are doing, and stay on the go.


Low Back Pain Myth: Moving is Bad

Myth #2: I should avoid exercise, especially weight training.

Back pain shouldn’t stop you enjoying exercise or regular activities. In fact, studies found that continuing with these can help you get better sooner including using weights where appropriate.


Low Back Pain Myth: Avoid Exercise

Myth #3: A scan will show me exactly what is wrong.

Sometimes it will, but most often it won’t. Also, even people without back pain have changes in their spine so scans can cause fear that influences behaviour, making the problem worse.


Low Back Pain Myth: Scans

Myth #4: Pain equals damage

This was the established view but more recent research has changed our thinking. Modern physio takes a holistic approach that helps people understand why they are in pain, and the reason is often not because there is damage to the body.


Low Back Pain Myth: Pain equals damage

Want to know more?

For further information you can visit the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy’s website to view the supporting evidence behind each myth buster. Move Physio has years of experience in assessing and managing lower back pain. If you have or know someone with lower back pain and would like more information please don’t hesitate to contact us at Move for Better Health.


Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, 2016, Back pain myth busters, Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, viewed 5th November 2019, <https://www.csp.org.uk/conditions/back-pain/back-pain-myth-busters>

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