With Christmas day around the corner, I am sure everyone is looking forward to his or her turkey dinner with all the trimmings. Before you celebrate Christmas and over indulge as we all do, please take a couple of minutes to have a read of our Christmas blog on how your turkey dinner can contribute to back pain.

Over the Christmas period diets, training plans are brushed to one side, and quite rightly so in my opinion. We all need time to enjoy ourselves, as lets be honest that’s what Christmas is for.

Over indulging on Turkey, pigs in blankets, Red wine and maybe the odd whiskey is what Christmas is about, but please don’t forget your back over the Christmas period.

Back pain is the most common musculoskeletal complaint in the UK, I am sure everyone knows a friend, family member who has suffered from at least one episode of back pain in their lifespan and yes back pain can be caused by your turkey dinner. No one wants back pain at any point in the year, especially over the Christmas period.

How does over indulging and a turkey dinner contribute to back pain you may ask?

Well let me explain…

Over indulging and excessive eating has been proven to cause abdominal swelling. Research by Paul Chek discusses the theory of abdominal swelling from over eating. He explains how preservatives in supermarket foods can lead to abdominal swelling. Abdominal swelling is proven to have a direct impact on the body’s ability to activate and strengthen the abdominal muscles.

If you would like read more into Paul Cheks’ work please click the link at the end of this blog.

So, over indulging can cause abdominal swelling, which can lead to your body being unable to recruit your abdominal muscles. It is commonly known we need our abdominal muscles (core) to help stabilise and protect the lower back to prevent lower back pain and reduce the effects of lower back pain.

Therefore yes over indulging on your turkey dinner can really contribute or cause an episode of lower back pain over Christmas.

Who’d have though it?

Don’t worry; I have put together some simple and effective exercise for you to perform over the Christmas period to ensure the festive fun doesn’t lead to that dreaded bad back and holt any plans for the new year. I promise they don’t take long and aren’t too strenuous, they can be performed with a hangover following a night with friends or family on the cheese and wine.


Christmas lower back exercise routine

Slowly rock your knees from side to side and repeat the movement for 60 seconds.

Gently arch your back up and down and repeat the movement for 60 seconds.

Raise your buttocks up in the air and hold the position for 60 seconds.

Gently compress your lower back into the floor, while raising your hands up to the outside of the knee, hold this position for 30 seconds and repeat on the opposite side.

Using your hands to ensure your lower back stays still; gently lower one leg at a time engaging your core to help prevent any excessive movement in your back. Repeat the movement slow and controlled for 60 seconds.

Make sure you complete the above routine on a daily basis to help with your back over the Christmas period.

If you have any underlying conditions or pre-existing back problems make sure you consult a medical professional before performing these exercises.

If you have any questions about any of the above information please do not hesitate to contact us on 0800 731 2738 or via email


Paul Chek – Abdominal Swelling

Office for National Statistics – Back pain


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