Jogging with spinal disc pain

If you experience frequent neck or back pain while jogging, you may be suffering from spinal disc pain from a damaged disc.

Jogging with pain in the neck or back is not recommended. While some muscle soreness can be expected while you train, especially if you are increasing your distance and endurance, disc pain can be identified by a constant dull pain with an occasional sharp pain during certain movements. In fact, this sharp pain is often a sign that the compression of your spine from jogging has caused a damaged disc to press against a nearby nerve root, which could indicate a more serious spine injury than just regular muscle soreness.

If you suspect that your discomfort may be something more serious than routine muscle soreness, see your physician right away.

Are recreational runners more susceptible to back pain than nonrunners?

Not necessarily. Much depends on the runner’s general physical fitness, body type and other genetic factors. However, the repetitive pounding of the feet, especially when running on concrete, causes shock waves to jolt the hips and lower back, so runners must be more aware of potential spine health issues.

Here are a few tips to help prevent serious spinal disc pain while running:

  • Wear proper footgear — Wear running shoes that are well padded and not worn out.
  • Practice proper posture — Relax the muscles in the back and shoulders and don’t try to hold yourself too upright.
  • Use sound running technique — Your natural momentum should carry you without having to “push” yourself forward to run.
  • Don’t bounce along — Too much spring in your stride places undue pressure on the discs in your lower back.
  • Strengthen your core — Work with an athletic trainer to develop an exercise regimen focusing on the abdominal and back muscles to help support your spine.

Treatment for spinal disc pain

Joggers can often find relief from spinal disc pain through conservative methods of treatment prescribed by a physician. These treatments can include over-the-counter or prescription medication along with physical therapy, rest or massage. However, if chronic pain persists after several months of conservative treatment, surgery may be presented as an option.

At Laser Spine Institute, we offer minimally invasive spine surgery, a safer and effective surgery alternative to traditional open neck and back surgery. With our procedures, patients are able to recover quicker^ and have a lower risk of complications compared to traditional spine surgery, which means you can get back to your running schedule faster.

Contact Laser Spine Institute to learn how our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures can help you find relief from neck or back pain. Send us your MRI report or CT scan to find out if you are a candidate for our minimally invasive spine surgery.