Lifting techniques are essential to maintain a healthy back. Many individuals have heard me state ad nauseum, NO BLT, NO BLT, NO BLT!!!!!!!!! For those of you who don’t already know, BLT is bend, twist and lift (at the same time). This one position is responsible for most injuries to the lower back. It turns out the disc is 50% weaker when twisting due to its design (see anatomy section). When you then bend over, the back wall of the disc (the annulus) is stretched putting it under tension. You increase the tension by loading the spine (lifting). This is a dangerous state where the fibers can tear.
Adding insult to injury, the further away the load is from your center of gravity, the greater the stress is on the back wall of the disc (remember high school physics- the laws of levers and fulcrums).
The problem is that the bad type of lifting (BLT) is easier- that is- it takes less energy to lift using the BLT technique than an appropriate safe technique (shoulders square to the load, lift with your legs, keep the weight next to your body, move with your legs). Training takes time to eliminate the bad habits gained since you were six years old. This is where a good physical therapist or chiropractor is worth their weight in gold- retraining you to eliminate the bad habits and lift properly.
You can also see that when you are tired, you may revert back to the old habits as BLT lifting expends so much less energy. This is the exact wrong time to start lifting like that as the muscle strength that is so necessary to prevent injuries is at its lowest. NO BLT, NO BLT, NO BLT!!!!