Lumbar stability is essential in the prevention of back injury. It is achieved through activation of the core muscles milliseconds before we move. The deep abdominal, pelvic floor and back muscles work together to provide stability. Often due to pain or injury in the back or pelvis, this automatic contraction stops happening. This leads to altered patterns of movement which can result in poor biomechanics when lifting as well as chronic or recurrent back, groin and pelvic pain.
Many studies have shown coordinated muscle function in healthy individuals that contrast with altered patterns of muscle activation found in individuals experiencing acute, recurrent or chronic lumbopelvic pain/dysfunction. Muscle function can be improved with rehabilitation but in order to provide effective treatment, a full movement assessment must be undertaken to ensure that the right muscles are targeted. Since the core muscles lie beneath other muscles, it is not possible to feel them contract. The only way to fully assess muscle contraction patterns is with Real-Time Ultrasound Imaging.