John Corfield aka ‘The Cheshire Osteopath’ is a Wilmslow Osteopath serving people in Cheshire and surrounding areas suffering back pain, neck and or shoulder pain. If you’re suffering from lower back, as a result of a lumbar disc problem, facet joint pain or even spinal stenosis it is likely your doctor will tell you to exercise as part of a treatment programme – the same usually applies for neck and shoulder pain.

However, what should you do if the exercise you’ve been advised to do further exacerbates the pain? Should you continue?… Should you have even exercised in the first place? It is my opinion that most GP’s knowledge when it comes to musculoskeletal pain is very limited, this is because unlike Osteopaths they have not studied anatomy full- time for 4 or 5 years.

Let’s talk about whether people should work through lower back, neck and or shoulder pain, exercise or activity related pain – versus pain related to a more complex problem.

Firstly let’s talk about exercise related pain. It is rather common to feel pain following exercise or activity especially if it’s something you have recently started doing. This pain is usually a mild soreness or ache and you will usually feel tender, however this would often settle down within 24-72 hours.

In stark contrast more severe pain caused by a lower back, neck and or shoulder injury is your body’s natural way of telling you something is wrong, this pain rather than a mild dull ache is often moderate to severe and can be quite debilitating and will have a serious impact on your day to day living. So if you have pain like this it is usually being caused by something more serious and requires immediate professional help from a fully trained professional such as an Osteopath.

Should you ignore your pain and try to work through it?

If a particular exercise is causing your pain to worsen you should absolutely not try to go through the pain you could make things much worse and in some cases cause life changing injuries.

As already stated pain is a way of telling you something is wrong. The pain is likely alerting you to the following:
The exercise you are doing is being performed incorrectly
The exercise you are doing is not designed for your particular problem and could be making it worse.
You have another injury or problem you are not aware of which hasn’t yet been diagnosed.

If you are experiencing pain with or without exercise see a specialist who treats back, neck and or shoulder pain.

Exercise is there to work around pain or avoid it certainly not to work through it, so if your lower back pain is made worse by running on the roads etc exchange it for running on a treadmill which offers you more of a cushion and lessens the impact.

For help with lower back, neck and or shoulder pain call 01625 836 816 or book online 24/7 via my website: