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Lower back sorness a sign of bad technique?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I am in pretty good shape, but after a hard day of skiing, the only thing that is really sore on me is my lower back. Is this a sign of improper technique? Does anyone else experience this
post #2 of 16
 is it muscle or the actual bones and joints?

if its muscles it can be a good sign that supporting yourself with your core but maybe need to hit the weight room or just ski more to make your lower back muscle strong but if its the spine and joints something is either wrong with how you ski or how your body is put together.
post #3 of 16
Not enough information

er, sorry to ask, but how old are you? osteoarthritis + spine compression that happens in a ski day = lower back soreness.

Technique can add to this of course, both good and bad:  if you are muscling your way through  bump fields instead of skiing them smmoooothly. Or, if you are one of those folks who likes to fling him/herself off of rocks and cliffs, etc., or if you are charging through set up or spring hardened crud at teeth chattering speeds....

Working on core strength, as Bushwacker suggested, is good for all these things, so it couldn't "hoit" to try it first.
post #4 of 16
 I think that muscular lower back soreness can be caused in part by not absorbing the terrain through proper flexion and extension.  Breaking at the waist to absorb terrain and having to straighten back up will tire the core muscles.  Granted the hips, knees, and ankles are all involved in "proper" flexion/extension, but this can be done without breaking at the waist.  Core strength does help with this as does making the absorption more proactive and less reactive.
post #5 of 16
Agree with teton. waist break will do it. I get back pain when I snowboard (which I'm bad at), and used to get it when skiing moguls. It's lessened these days as my technique's improved (a couple of years ago when it would hurt a fair bit, one instructor likened me to one of those plastic bobbing drinking birds). I stillget it in heavy powder conditions where I'm overworking myself. It's not really uncommon among skiers. Especially if you have a lot of "whoops" moments in a day where your balance gets slightly flung.  
post #6 of 16

Skiing moguls with a lot of over slamming and braking at the waist will make my back sore. Carving on hard surface with very aggressive racing skis will also hurt my back. Especially on the race track. Seems like a lot of angulation in combination with big turn forces can cause some really nasty situations.
So its not a direct sign of bad technique. It could be, like in my case  but not necessarily in yours. This year my back has given me less trouble than ever before. I guess its partly because I have skied more than normally.

post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

 I think that muscular lower back soreness can be caused in part by not absorbing the terrain through proper flexion and extension.  Breaking at the waist to absorb terrain and having to straighten back up will tire the core muscles.  Granted the hips, knees, and ankles are all involved in "proper" flexion/extension, but this can be done without breaking at the waist.  Core strength does help with this as does making the absorption more proactive and less reactive.

so how do you flex at the hips with out breaking at the waist? because sometime skiing moguls I am taking hits up to my chest with ankles and knee as well as my hips flexed. To keep my upper body from falling forward and breaking at the waist I have to use my by all accounts my strong  lower back to keep me up right. after a day of mogul skiing my lower back muscle along with my core muscle can feel sore like my legs will feel from bike riding its not the joints just the muscle. My legs almost never feel sore skiing anymore and I ski everyday.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
IT is more a muscle sorness, I charge pretty hard, I waas skiing moguls, trees, and took a few descent size hucks. So It is probably a combination of skiing hard and improper technique.

I would also be interested in some more tips on how to flex at the hip and not break the waist
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
so how do you flex at the hips with out breaking at the waist? because sometime skiing moguls I am taking hits up to my chest with ankles and knee as well as my hips flexed. To keep my upper body from falling forward and breaking at the waist I have to use my by all accounts my strong  lower back to keep me up right. after a day of mogul skiing my lower back muscle along with my core muscle can feel sore like my legs will feel from bike riding its not the joints just the muscle. My legs almost never feel sore skiing anymore and I ski everyday.

I think I recall your skiing MA vids and it looks great. Presumably your technique is sound... I imagine you're already absorbing as you approach the moguls and extending into the troughs... I can't imagine you're doing a drinking bird. you're probably right that in your case it's related to core strength and general pulling forces from angulation. In the OP's case, he thought there might be a technique issue, so my gut tells me he's sniffed it out himself. And for more than half the skiers on the moguls (where I ski), breaking at the waist and absorbing impacts in the back is a more common issue than underdeveloped muscles. 
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post




I think I recall your skiing MA vids and it looks great. Presumably your technique is sound... I imagine you're already absorbing as you approach the moguls and extending into the troughs... I can't imagine you're doing a drinking bird. you're probably right that in your case it's related to core strength and general pulling forces from angulation. In the OP's case, he thought there might be a technique issue, so my gut tells me he's sniffed it out himself. And for more than half the skiers on the moguls (where I ski), breaking at the waist and absorbing impacts in the back is a more common issue than underdeveloped muscles. 

well my point was I dont lean forward(by breaking at the waist) but I flex alot at the hips while keeping my body straight up and down and quite. This requires TONS of core strength. I only run into real issue making 20 laps days at MRG. I was just pointing out a case where a strong young skier with reasonably sound technique actually get tired lower back muscle(along with abs as well), I never get joint pain or muscle soreness that last for more than a couple hours after skiing though.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post




so how do you flex at the hips with out breaking at the waist? because sometime skiing moguls I am taking hits up to my chest with ankles and knee as well as my hips flexed. To keep my upper body from falling forward and breaking at the waist I have to use my by all accounts my strong  lower back to keep me up right. after a day of mogul skiing my lower back muscle along with my core muscle can feel sore like my legs will feel from bike riding its not the joints just the muscle. My legs almost never feel sore skiing anymore and I ski everyday.


 

I think you answered this question yourself in post 10.  IMO bending at the waist isn't the same as flexing in the hip joint and allowing the knees to come up to the chest.  I think that if you break at the waist your knees won't come to your chest.  I also ski everyday and my legs don't get sore, except sometimes when telemarking.  My lower back was giving me some problems early season and to my mind it was because I was breaking at the waist more than I wanted to.  It got better when I stopped doing it so much.  My core also got stronger which made it easier to use better technique.  Maybe it's a chicken vs the egg situation.  I think do think that good technique makes it easier to ski with less strength being necessary.  Core strength, and strength in general, is always a good thing and increases your options.  A skier with a strong core and deficient technique might have a sore back by lunchtime.  A skier with a strong core and great technique may also get a sore back after a full day of hard skiing.
post #12 of 16
Breaking at the waist has been mentioned but that would be fairly easy to spot for someone who skis it all.  Far harder to spot would be upper and lower body separation at the waist instead of in the hips. or a shared separation between the to.

If your upper body is fairly steady but you hips follow your feet to much your back will get sore. 

A twist at the waist can result from a number of issues.  For instance, it can result from too much counter at the hips with a resulting twist at the waist to bring the upper body over the lower body to achieve balance in carving.  It can also result from too little counter and not enough tip lead for the situation at hand such as skiing short brushed turns.

Lower back problems can also result from improper alignment.

Without seeing you ski its very hard to tell where the problems could be.
post #13 of 16
The difference between breaking at the waist versus the hips in many conversations is often just semantics, but there is a distinct definable difference. It's possible to have upper-lower body separation at two different points. In skiing it's easier to notice rotationally. Turn just your shoulders (bending at the waist) versus turning both shoulders and hips (bending at the hips). If you bend the upper body down at the end of the turn, voila you have a difference between bending at the waist vs bending at the hips. This is a huge back breaker in golf. Golfers who bend at the waist can grind their lower backs into dust. Golfers who turn at the hips do much better.

Lower back problems are a boon to the physical health industry. The potential causes are too numerous to mention. There are at least a 1/2 dozen types of professional disciplines that offer diagnosis and relief of lower back pain. It's likely that TFull's pain is at least exaggerated by technique issues, but Mom has nailed it (not enough information). Possible remedies could range from a technique change to flex more in the knees and ankles, custom orthotics, stretching exercises, strength exercises (e.g. crunches), a visit to a chiropractor/masseuse/acupuncturist, surgery, drinking more water to losing weight.

My recommendation is to start with getting video or taking a lesson.
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Speaking of lessons does anyone know any good instructors in the East? Particularly killington?
post #15 of 16
The Beast of the East has a ton of great pros. I recommend Keith Hopkins (aka Hoser). Ask him about his band.
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty View Post

The Beast of the East has a ton of great pros. I recommend Keith Hopkins (aka Hoser). Ask him about his band.

+2 but......

Id recommend comin up alittle further north. Privates at stowe are 50 percent off after Easter weekend.
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