The spinal cord is undeniable proof that every part of our body is interconnected. As the center of our nervous system, it’s also the one single part of the body that every other part is impacted by when alignment issues occur. This makes proper spinal alignment imperative, and chiropractic care essential in maintaining that alignment.
Keeping vertebrae aligned is only one aspect of ensuring ideal spinal health, however. A secondary and supremely important aspect is building the muscles that support proper spinal posture. In many chiropractic settings, this secondary responsibility falls to the patient. However, through the Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) approach, proper muscle strengthening and conditioning is built into a patient’s individualized treatment plan.
A musculoskeletal focus not only brings a spine back into alignment, it also strengthens the resolve of the spine to endure better, remain supported, and resist future forces that may cause shifting.
Supportive posterior muscles
The root of muscular spinal support can be traced to those muscles in direct contact with the spinal column itself, including:
- Trapezius muscles;
- Rhomboideus major and minor muscles;
- Teres major and minor muscles;
- Latissimus dorsi muscles;
- And various additional superficial muscles.
These are the muscles that offer critical stabilization during flexing and extension, to help support the spine’s posture. Weakness in these muscles means an inability to prevent spinal shifting during periods requiring postural support, including squatting, sitting, or lifting objects.
Foundational anterior muscles
Musculoskeletal support of the spine is also derived from anterior muscles. These foundational muscles offer strength when it comes to retaining posture when standing, laying, sitting, or performing upright activities such as running. Foundational muscles include:
- External and internal abdominal oblique muscles;
- Rectus abdominis;
- Transversus abdominis;
- Tendinous inscriptions.
More muscles engage both in tandem and opposite posterior muscles during flexing and extending movements, working to provide stability and control within the parameters of spinal movement.
Strengthening muscles for support
While many spine-supporting muscles can be strengthened through traditional muscle-building routines such as weightlifting, a majority of superficial muscles require targeted strengthening beyond what the gym can offer. Chiropractors and spinal rehabilitation specialists often recommend specialized exercise regimens to ensure these muscles are engaged conditioned:
- High intensity interval training (HIIT);
- Power Plate training;
- Bodyweight exercises.
It’s important for patients to understand that often, spinal support muscles are not “glamor muscles” and the strengthening effects of training them are rarely visible. Similarly, someone showcasing a toned and muscled physique could also be foundationally weak.
Stressing the musculoskeletal relationship
As the CBP approach to spinal health dictates, it’s important to look at the whole picture for comprehensive spinal health. A good approach to rehabilitative care and sustained posture looks beyond the spine itself, to the muscles that support it. Taking the time to strengthen and develop these important muscles means preserving the restorative effects of spinal realignment.
Teaching patients simple exercises, stressing the importance of these exercises, and segmenting a portion of chiropractic visits to focus on muscles strengthening is a prime way to keep patients on track to meet their goals.
Consult with the professionals at Ideal Spine Health Center today and see why we’re the leading resource for chiropractic care in Boise, ID. We’re ready to offer you a free exam to determine the health of your spine.
Chiropractic BioPhysics, or CBP, is one of the most scientific, researched, and results-oriented corrective care techniques. CBP-trained chiropractors aim to realign the spine back to health, eliminating nerve interference and addressing the source of pain, fatigue, and disease. As with all chiropractic care, CBP is gentle, painless, and non-invasive.