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Can We Prevent Back Injuries?

Bracko, Michael R. Ed.D., CSCS, FACSM

ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal: July-August 2004 - Volume 8 - Issue 4 - p 5-11
Features: CEC Self-Test

Learning Objectives Back pain is one of the most significant health care issues in North America. It affects health/fitness professionals as well as their clients. Approximately 60% to 80% of individuals in that population will suffer from back pain at one point in their life. The objectives of this article are 1) to review the research on back injuries as it relates to risk factors, 2) discuss the mechanisms of injury, 3) provide an objective interpretation of back injury prevention, and 4) provide exercises that can be used to prevent back pain.

Back pain is one of the most significant health-care issues in the U.S. Approximately 60% to 80% of the population will suffer from back pain at one point in their life. This feature examines the risk factors for, and causes of, back injuries and explains exercises that can be done to decrease the risk for back injury.

Michael R. Bracko, Ed.D., CSCS, FACSM, is an exercise physiologist and director of the Occupational Performance Institute. He is on the editorial board for ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal® and works as an exercise physiologist in three areas. First, he works in the field of occupational physiology: injury prevention, ergonomics, workstation stretching, and pre-work warm-up. Second, he works as a sports physiologist as director of the Institute for Hockey Research where he conducts research on the performance characteristics of female ice hockey players and teaches high performance skating and hockey clinics. He also is the physiologist for University of Alberta Women's Hockey Team and the U.S. Men's Deaf Olympic Hockey Team. Finally, he works in the field of health and fitness as the fitness research editor for Impact Fitness Magazine in Calgary, as a consultant for Health Spa's, and as a regular presenter at fitness meetings such as ACSM's Health & Fitness Summit & Exposition.

© 2004 American College of Sports Medicine