Force applied by muscles produces stress on them. A stress is a force or load that is applied to a body, segment, or muscle. Stress may occur as compression, distraction, shear, torsional, bending, twisting, or any combination. When a muscle get stressed, its connective tissue resist. The muscle and their connective tissue resist these stresses in similar fashion. If they are unable to withstand the stress, injury occurs. Muscle and its surrounding connective tissue possess mechanical and physical properties that provide resistance to stresses. The most important thing is how we can use these characteristics in our advantage during exercise and rehabilitation.
It is the resistance to an external force that cause a permanent deformation. It is a term that is usually applied to fluids. Human tissues also have some viscosity. Clinicians use the fact that elevating temperature reduces viscosity by applying heat to tissue before stretching it. Lowering tissue temperature, on the other hand, increases the tissue’s viscosity. If you have ever been outside without gloves or mittens on a cold day, you know this already because you may recall how stiff your fingers and hands were when you first entered a warm building.
Extensibility and elasticity are closely related. Extensibility is the ability to stretch, elongate or expand. Elasticity is the ability to succumb to an elongating force and then return to normal length when the force is released. The more elasticity a tissue possesses, the more extensibility it will be able to demonstrate. Viscosity and extensibility are inversely proportional in terms of tissue strength. Muscle and connective tissue have both properties of viscosity and elasticity and are referred to viscoelasticity.
Stressed Back, Strain and Creep
Stress is a force or load that the body or its parts resists. How well those structures are able to resist a stress is dependent upon its ability to deform. This is the strain of a structure, the amount of deformation it is able to tolerate before t succumbs to the stress. Stress and strain varies from one structure to another and from one type of tissue to another. Creep is the elongation of tissue from the application of low-level load over time. We experience creep on a daily basis. If you measure your height in the morning and then again in the evening, you will discover that you are taller in the morning. The long-term effect of gravity in our tissues causes the height difference by the end of the day. People with stiff lower back muscles will find it difficult to effectively bend their back and stretch; however using a prolonged stretch of perhaps 10 minutes may produce sufficient creep to increase the flexibility of the back muscles.
Back Muscle Strength
Among many definitions of strength are the state of being strong, the capacity of a muscle to produce force and the ability of a muscle to generate active tension. How well the lower back muscles are able to produce force depends upon a number of factors. These factors influences muscles performance and depends on
- the muscle size and length
- speed of muscle contraction
- age and gender
Speed of Muscle Contraction
The rate of muscle shortening or lengthening substantially affects the force a muscle can develop during the activation. As the speed of the contraction becomes slower, the muscle’s force development increases. When there is no motion, there is a maximum contraction which is also known as zero-velocity contraction.
Age and Gender
Males are generally stronger then the females. In both genders, however muscle strength increases from birth through adolescence, peaking between the ages of 20 and 30 years, and gradually declining after 30 years of age. The greater strength of males
appears to be related primarily to the greater muscle mass the develop after puberty. After puberty, the muscle mass of males becomes as much as 50 % greater than that of females.
Although muscle strength is related to age and gender in the population as a whole, many exceptions to the general rule can be found because of the following two factors:
- The large variation in the rate at which biological maturation occurs.
- The large variation in individual genetics and specific conditioning levels which are acquired and maintained through proper diet and exercises.
As far as exercises are concerns, a lot of back pain exercises are recommended by the chiropractors and physiotherapists. According to the mental and physical conditions of the patient, they are suggested exercises and therapies accordingly.
Backrack™ Spine System
Backrack™ is a back decompression device that enables you to treat back muscle strains and sprains at home. It helps in creating more flexibility and mobility in the lower back region. Backrack™ is very easy to use and suitable for patients of any age group. This device has a unique concept and application system which prevents the patients from invasive back pain treatments like surgery or steroid injections.
If you’re suffering from back muscle strain or any other spinal condition, try Backrack™ to reduce and prevent all forms of back pain and their associated symptoms.