Blog Archives

4 Step Back Solution

Got an achy back?  You’re not alone.  Back pain is the number 2 reason for doctor visits, and one of the most common reasons for missed work.

What should you do if your back hurts all the time?  First, check with your doctor to find out whether your back ache is caused by daily habits, muscular weakness, or an accident.

If your doctor tells you there is structural damage to bone, ligament, tendon or muscle, he/she may prescribe medication,  and/or a treatment plan.

If your doctor discovers that the reason for your back pain is muscular weakness, or daily habits, and that participating in regular exercise will help, then you can begin doing exercise.


1) Stretch your back with Yoga poses, or Pilates exercises.

2) Strengthen your core muscles, especially the abdominal, and back muscles. Muscles work in pairs. That’s why they should be strengthened, and stretched in equal measure.

3) Avoid sleeping on your stomach.  When you sleep on your stomach, your pelvis tips forward, tightening the low back muscles.  In the morning you’ll wake up with a backache. Instead, sleep on your side, or on your back.

While you sleep on your back, place a pillow under your knees to help stretch your back muscles.  While sleeping on your side, place a pillow between your knees to ease your low back.

4) Practice the pelvic tilting exercise.  This exercise stretches your low back muscles.  Pelvic tilting can be done while standing against a wall, lying on your back, or seated on a chair, or on an exercise ball.

IRENE PORTRAIT picassa blue borderIrene Pastore is a native New Yorker, health and fitness blogger, and personal trainer. Irene owns this website, and writes all the blog posts. For her complete bio, visit the About Page.

Copyright 2016 Irene Pastore and Tour De


The Rider’s Pain-Free Back

The Rider’s Pain Free Back, by James Warson, M.D. published in 2007 by Trafalgar Square Books.Product Details

Dr. Warson gives a thorough explanation of the causes, prevention, and remedies of back pain, for riders of all disciplines.

Science-based explanations are written so that everyone can understand, and appreciate the congenital and mechanical reasons for developing lumbar pain.

Dr. Warson’s book provides practical information on the diagnosis, treatment, and pain management related to back problems in riders.

If you’re a rider who has given up, or is thinking of giving up riding because of a sore, or painful back, this book is a must read.

Dr. Warson, a lifelong horseman, and neurosurgeon is the founder of the Front Range Brain and Spine Surgery Center in northern Colorado.

The Rider’s Pain-Free Back is sold on Amazon, where it rates a 5 star review from readers.

Copyright 2015 Irene Pastore and Tour De Core Personal Training

Back Care for Equestrians


Riding is a strenuous sport that requires the equestrian to maintain a neutral spine, while sitting in the English or Western saddle.

The saddle, is literally a backless chair, offering no support for the spine.  The rider must generate support using strong core muscles.

Little needs to be said about the debilitating effects of back pain for equestrians.  No one wants to, or should ride, when in pain.  The more uncomfortable you are, the less you’ll be able to enjoy being with your horse. He’ll miss you too.

Learning what causes back pain, and taking preventive measures, will bring many happy riding years.  The easiest, and most cost-effective solution, is exercise.


Regular exercise is highly recommended for prevention of back pain, and maintaining a healthy back.

Pilates and Yoga keeps riders both strong and flexible. Pilates strengthens your back and abs, Yoga stretches critical areas important for riding, as well as developing tranquility.

Fitness-derived core exercises are an excellent method to strengthen and stretch muscles that are vital for riders.


  • Muscle spasm
  • Awkward twisting, or bending motions
  • Incorrect lifting a heavy object
  • Spinal trauma
  • Bending down and abrupt turning around
  • Muscle imbalance
  • Coughing or sneezing
  • Prolonged sitting
  • Sports injuries
  • Aging
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Poor sitting or standing posture
  • Arthritis


  • Back Pain is one of the most common causes of doctor’s visits in the United States
  • Back Pain affects most people at least once during their lifetime.
  • Untreated back pain can make daily activities difficult or impossible.
  • Back pain affects about 60 to 80 percent of American adults,
  • More than 26 million Americans between the ages of 20-64 experience frequent back pain.
  • Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work.
  • Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide.
  • Americans spend at least $50 billion yearly on back pain.

From the American Chiropractic Association and The American Academy of Pain Medicine


  • Over-the counter pain relievers
  • Hot or cold packs
  • Exercise
  • Medication
  • Physical therapy
  • Complementary or alternative treatments
  • Injections
  • Surgery

Copyright 2014 Irene Pastore and Tour De Core Personal Training