In 2020, after the first MCO was lifted in June, we started our operation again by providing one to one teaching. Among clients that come for practice, we noticed that around 90% of them were experiencing lower back pain. Long hours of sitting caused tightness at the muscle – Quadratus Lumborum (QL).
QL is a very important muscle at our lower back, connecting the 12th ribs to the iliac bone and also the lumbar spine. It is rectangular in shape and plays important role in stabilising the lower back and pelvic.
We can identify this muscle as the security officer at the lumbar spine and pelvic. If this muscle is weak, the pelvic and lumbar spine will loss its stability and cause pain at our lower back.
This muscle also attached to the ribcage. We understand that muscles that attached to the ribcage are essential in assisting our breathing pattern. Quadratus lumborum assist exhalation by pulling down the 12th ribs. we may experienced pulled at the QL when we breathe, cough or sneeze and this lead to lower back pain.
Our gluteus muscles and abdominal muscles become weak due to long hour sittings, and the quadrates lumborum has to compensate the work by abs and glutes. After long run, the QL is overworked.
Let’s learn how to massage and stretch the QL muscle. 那我们要如何放松千年老腰呢？
- Use a massage ball to massage the QL by lying down sideway. The massage ball is place in between the ribcage and pelvic. Stay in the position and breathe normally to feel the pressure placed on QL. Then move your body forward and backward to massage the muscle. 用按摩球按摩，侧躺将球放在腰的位子，要避免压倒肋骨。
2. Stretch the QL in sitted position, one leg is straight and another is bent. First, shift the upper body to the straight leg side and slowly stretch all the way with the opposite hand reaching to opposite side. Keep the pelvic stable at all time. 坐姿拉伸腰方肌，身体向一侧平移再侧屈，感觉腰部的拉伸。整个过程保持核心收紧和骨盆稳定。
3. Stretch the QL in kneeling position, reaching one hand up and stretch to the opposite side. Equal weights on both legs and pelvic is stable at all time. 双膝跪地，单手向对侧延展，过程中保持核心收紧和骨盆稳定。
Imagine the QL muscle is like a rubber band, If the elasticity is not enough, it will break when pulled to the extreme. Once a muscle strain occurs, it can take months or even longer to recover.
Protect your quadratus lumborum muscle to prevent lower back pain.