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Back Pain When Walking

Walking around is an activity we all have to do every day, and it becomes pretty distressing when every step we take is accompanied by pain in the lower back. Don’t get us wrong- most people will have lower back pain at one point or the other in their lives; however, it’s usually the kind that goes away when they take a nap or get their partner to massage them. It’s a different thing when the pain stays there all the time and doesn’t improve or improve slightly with interventions at home.

No matter the level of lower back pain you have, you can get the needed relief with physical therapy in Austin, TX, at Carter Physiotherapy. This article will furnish you with all the details you need about pain in the lower back when walking and how we can help you with back pain therapy in Austin, TX.

Why Do You Have Lower Back Pain When Walking

Muscle fatigue and poor posture when walking are the most likely culprits when you have lower back pain when walking however, persistent pain may indicate a more severe problem. The back region comprises the vertebral column bones, spinal discs, muscles, tendons, nerves, and other structures that may get injured and cause low back pain.

Muscle Fatigue, Sprain or Strain

Walking or standing for long hours or heavy lifting can strain your back muscles and cause fatigue. In these cases, sitting or lying down immediately to rest your tired back will relieve you of the worst pain, and you can also take pain medication. You must also know that overweight people tend to have lower back pain faster when walking because of more strain on the back.

Degenerative Disc Disease

The spinal discs are cartilaginous pads between the vertebral column bones that help absorb the impact of regular movements, exposing them to wear and tear as we age. Before long, the bones start to rub against one another, causing pain and stiffness. You must note that back pain due to degenerative disc disease may improve with walking but worsen with lifting, standing, or bending. Nonetheless, you need back pain therapy in Austin, TX, among other medical interventions.


Hyperlordosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine around the lower back, such that the abdomen shoots out and the lower back is depressed, giving a noticeable C-shaped gap in the lower back that comes with pain, which worsens on prolonged standing. People develop hyperlordosis from conditions like obesity, rickets, and osteoporosis.

Spinal Stenosis

Spinal stenosis is an abnormal narrowing of the spinal canal where the spinal cord and other associated nerves run through, and that causes pressure on the spinal cord, resulting in pain. Other symptoms of this condition include weakness and tingling in the legs, bowel and bladder problems, and sexual dysfunction. While some people are born with a narrow spinal canal, others develop it following injury to the back.


The Sciatic nerve is a long nerve that runs from the lower back to the legs and supplies the entire region. Sometimes, the nerve is compressed along its course in the lower back, resulting in symptoms like pain and tingling radiating from the lower back down the legs. The common causes of sciatica are a slipped intervertebral disc and tissue inflammation in the area due to injury.

Risk Factors For Developing Lower Back Pain

Certain factors, especially lifestyle choices, put you at risk of developing lower back pain, and you should avoid them when possible at all costs. Smoking ranks high on this list, as it decreases blood flow to the spine, increases the risk of osteoporosis, and causes frequent coughing (which increases the risk of slipped discs). You should also minimize heavy lifting or do it correctly if you must.

When Do You Need Physical Therapy For Lower Back Pain?

Physical therapy for lower back pain is an established treatment modality, and you can expect a referral from a doctor when you complain about the condition. Your physical therapist will recommend treatment techniques that address the root cause of your pain.

Carter Physiotherapy uses manual therapy, acupuncture, and electrical stimulation to treat lower back pain. Your physical therapist will also educate you on proper posture and lifestyle modifications to treat and prevent back pain.

You should see your physical therapist for lower back pain in these cases:

Chronic Pain

Chronic pain means it lasts for more than three months or is recurrent. Recurrent pain often comes and goes.

Interference With Daily Activities

If you cannot sleep, work, or participate in hobbies because of lower back pain, seek immediate medical attention.

Underlying Condition

If your lower back pain results from specific conditions, you should see your physical therapist, who can diagnose if your pain is due to sciatica, herniated disc, injury, or arthritis.

Accompanying Symptoms

You may need physical therapy in Austin, TX, for lower back pain if it accompanies other symptoms. If you experience tingling, weakness, numbness, or loss of bladder control, seek immediate medical attention.

What Happens During Physical Therapy for Lower Back Pain

You will undergo a thorough assessment of your condition when you visit your physical therapist for lower back pain. Your physical therapist will ask about your symptoms, how long you have experienced the pain and your medical history. 

They will also examine your lower back and perform diagnostic tests. These tests often check for mobility, range of motion, strength, and posture. 

After diagnosis, your physical therapist will develop an appropriate treatment plan. The plan may include exercises, modalities, and hands-on treatment. You may need to attend several physical therapy sessions to improve your condition.

Physical Therapy Treatments for Lower Back Pain

Some physical therapy treatments for lower back pain include the following:

Physical Therapy Exercises For Lower Back Pain

Physical therapy exercises can help relieve your pain. They also benefit you for years because they maintain strength and spinal flexibility. You should include these exercises in your daily routine for maximum benefits. They include the Knee-To-Chest stretch, Pelvic tilt, Cat-Cow Stretch, and Bird-Dog.

Manual Therapy

Manual therapy involves the use of hands as opposed to devices to apply pressure on soft tissue and manipulate the joints to decrease back pain. Professionals use soft tissue work like massage, which helps ease pain in soft tissue, increase circulation, and relax muscles. They also manipulate soft tissue, joints, and bones with varied movements to improve flexibility and correct alignment.

Laser Treatment For Back Pain 

Laser therapy can reduce pain and regenerate damaged tissue for optimal health. This treatment is safe. Your physical therapist will use low-level lasers to send signals into your body. These signals encourage your damaged back tissues to heal and regenerate. 

Although this treatment is safe, discussing it with your physical therapist is best. The treatment may pose a risk to your health if you are pregnant or have cancer.


Ultrasound therapy is another physical therapy modality for lower back pain. Your physical therapist will use a hand-held machine to deliver sound waves to your lower back. These waves penetrate your skin and produce heat and vibrations. This heat then speeds up your recovery by reducing pain.


TENS is another physical therapy modality for treating lower back pain. Your physical therapist will use a small, battery-operated ceviche to deliver mild electrical current to the sore region. This device has sticky pads, also known as electrodes. 

This treatment is safe and has a low risk of complications. However, your skin may become irritated if you are allergic to the pads. You should inform your physical therapists if this happens.

Tips To Prevent Lower Back Pain When Walking

If you can help it, your best bet against lower back pain is prevention. The first step to prevent lower back pain when walking is maintaining good posture by walking straight with no leaning or slumping. When lifting heavy objects, try to hold the object as close as possible to your body while maintaining a wide stance, and do not bend from the back but rather from the legs. 

Regular exercising is also key to preventing lower back pain when walking. Professionals recommend that we exercise up to 30 minutes daily for most days of the week, and you should mix low- and high-intensity workouts like swimming, walking, and bike riding.

If your work involves extended sitting periods in front of a computer, use a supportive chair and keep the computer at eye level.

Ensure a diet with adequate whole grains, lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables.


This article has extensively discussed the causes of lower back pain when walking, how physical therapy in Austin, TX, can help you, and what to expect from your physical therapist. We also discussed several tips to help you avoid lower back pain. Do not hesitate to visit us today for the best physical therapy you can get for your back pain.