Can lumbar traction therapy alleviate an individual’s lower back pain by restoring weak trunk muscles over time?


The trunk muscles are the body’s main stabilizers that support upper body weight and stabilize the lower body weight. These muscles work with the lumbar back muscles so the individual can maintain good posture and be mobile when in motion without pain. However, when traumatic or normal forces start to affect the trunk muscles, it can lead to unwanted musculoskeletal pain that can lead to a life of disability and affect their performance in their routine. Weak truck muscles can lead to low back pain issues while causing referred pain to the lower extremities. However, many individuals are finding ways to strengthen their trunk muscles by slowly integrating core exercises and going to non-surgical treatments to reduce the pain they have been experiencing. Today’s article looks at how weak truck muscles correlate with low back pain and how non-surgical treatments like lumbar traction can reduce pain associated with weak trunk muscles. Additionally, we communicate with certified medical providers who incorporate our patients’ information to ease low back pain associated with weak trunk muscles, causing many musculoskeletal issues in the lower body. We also inform them that non-surgical treatments can help re-strengthen the truck muscles. We encourage our patients to ask amazing educational questions for our associated medical providers about their symptoms correlating with weak trunk muscles. Dr. Jimenez, D.C., incorporates this information as an academic service. Disclaimer


Weak Trunk Muscles Correlate With Low Back Pain

Do you often experience low back pain after carrying a heavy object from one location to another at work? Do you slouch more than usual when you are relaxing at home? Or have you noticed that you can’t hold a plank for less than 30 seconds during a workout? Many individuals dealing with these issues in these scenarios could be dealing with weak core muscles that can lead to low back pain. Since low back pain is a common problem that many people have, some of the correlating factors could be weak trunk muscles. Weak trunk muscles in the body can be due to the body naturally degenerating, causing the intervertebral disc to deteriorate. When the water content and spinal disc height begin to go through mechanical changes from unwanted pressure loads, it can cause the intervertebral discs to bulge out of the spine more and cause the surrounding ligaments and muscles to deal with more stress and become weak over time. (Adams et al., 1990) When the trunk muscles weaken, the lower extremities will start to develop musculoskeletal conditions that can lead to pain. Spinal disorders develop over time when normal or traumatic forces begin to affect the quality and quantity of the trunk muscle functions for its range of motion, strength, and endurance when a person is doing normal activities. (Allen, 1988)



So how would weak trunk muscles and low back pain have this relationship to affect a person’s spine? When muscle activity begins to be reduced within the trunk region, symptoms like stiffness and pain can cause postural shrinkage to the spinal disc in the lumbar region. (Cholewicki, 2004) Additionally, when dealing with low back pain, their trunk muscles undergo structural changes that can affect their stability. These changes can lead to reduced movement speed and range of motion, which then causes many of the accessory muscles to compensate for the pain that the person is experiencing. (Van Dieën, Cholewicki, & Radebold, 2003) However, numerous individuals will opt for a treatment plan to reduce low back pain and also help strengthen weak core muscles.


Can Core Exercises Help With Back Pain?-Video

Can Core Exercises Help with Back Pain? | El Paso, Tx (2023)

When it comes to strengthening and restoring weak muscles to reduce low back pain, many individuals will try exercising to lessen the pain they are experiencing in their lumbar spine and strengthen their weakened core muscles. The video above indicates that including core strengthening workouts in a workout routine can be essential to pain management. Exercising alone can be challenging without the right motivation, but it can be included in a personalized treatment plan that can be effective and customizable to manage lumbar impairment. (Li & Bombardier, 2001) Many individuals opt for non-surgical treatments due to their cost-effectiveness and how safe it is on the spine to reduce muscle weakness within the trunk muscles.

Lumbar Traction Restoring Weak Trunk Muscles

When dealing with weak trunk muscles correlating with low back pain, incorporating non-surgical treatment could be the answer to reducing the pain they have been experiencing. Non-surgical treatments like lumbar traction, spinal decompression, massage therapy, physical therapy, and chiropractic care utilize mechanical and manual techniques to reduce pain in the upper and lower body portions, help stretch out shortened and tight muscles, and kick-start the body’s natural healing process. Since lumbar traction is a non-surgical treatment, it can help restore muscle strength within the trunk region. Lumbar traction can be used manually or mechanically to increase intervertebral disc space, decrease mechanical stress, and reduce muscle spasms. (Wegner et al., 2013) When many individuals feel relief from their pain and strengthen their trunk muscles gradually, they will notice a difference in their routine and continue to be pain-free after a few session treatments.



Adams, M. A., Dolan, P., Hutton, W. C., & Porter, R. W. (1990). Diurnal changes in spinal mechanics and their clinical significance. J Bone Joint Surg Br, 72(2), 266-270.


Allen, M. E. (1988). Clinical kinesiology: measurement techniques for spinal disorders. Orthop Rev, 17(11), 1097-1104.


Cholewicki, J. (2004). The effects of lumbosacral orthoses on spine stability: what changes in EMG can be expected? J Orthop Res, 22(5), 1150-1155.


Li, L. C., & Bombardier, C. (2001). Physical therapy management of low back pain: an exploratory survey of therapist approaches. Phys Ther, 81(4), 1018-1028.


Van Dieën, J. H., Cholewicki, J., & Radebold, A. (2003). Trunk Muscle Recruitment Patterns in Patients With Low Back Pain Enhance the Stability of the Lumbar Spine. Spine, 28(8), 834-841.


Wegner, I., Widyahening, I. S., van Tulder, M. W., Blomberg, S. E., de Vet, H. C., Bronfort, G., Bouter, L. M., & van der Heijden, G. J. (2013). Traction for low-back pain with or without sciatica. Cochrane Database Syst Rev, 2013(8), CD003010.


Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Trunk Muscle Response To Lumbar Traction Therapy" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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Dr. Alex Jimenez
Specialties: Stopping the PAIN! We Specialize in Treating Severe Sciatica, Neck-Back Pain, Whiplash, Headaches, Knee Injuries, Sports Injuries, Dizziness, Poor Sleep, Arthritis. We use advanced proven therapies focused on optimal Mobility, Posture Control, Deep Health Instruction, Integrative & Functional Medicine, Functional Fitness, Chronic Degenerative Disorder Treatment Protocols, and Structural Conditioning. We also integrate Wellness Nutrition, Wellness Detoxification Protocols and Functional Medicine for chronic musculoskeletal disorders. We use effective "Patient Focused Diet Plans", Specialized Chiropractic Techniques, Mobility-Agility Training, Cross-Fit Protocols, and the Premier "PUSH Functional Fitness System" to treat patients suffering from various injuries and health problems. Ultimately, I am here to serve my patients and community as a Chiropractor passionately restoring functional life and facilitating living through increased mobility. Purpose & Passions: I am a Doctor of Chiropractic specializing in progressive cutting-edge therapies and functional rehabilitation procedures focused on clinical physiology, total health, functional strength training, functional medicine, and complete conditioning. We focus on restoring normal body functions after neck, back, spinal and soft tissue injuries. We use Specialized Chiropractic Protocols, Wellness Programs, Functional & Integrative Nutrition, Agility & Mobility Fitness Training and Cross-Fit Rehabilitation Systems for all ages. As an extension to dynamic rehabilitation, we too offer our patients, disabled veterans, athletes, young and elder a diverse portfolio of strength equipment, high-performance exercises and advanced agility treatment options. We have teamed up with the cities' premier doctors, therapist and trainers in order to provide high-level competitive athletes the options to push themselves to their highest abilities within our facilities. We've been blessed to use our methods with thousands of El Pasoans over the last 3 decades allowing us to restore our patients' health and fitness while implementing researched non-surgical methods and functional wellness programs. Our programs are natural and use the body's ability to achieve specific measured goals, rather than introducing harmful chemicals, controversial hormone replacement, un-wanted surgeries, or addictive drugs. We want you to live a functional life that is fulfilled with more energy, a positive attitude, better sleep, and less pain. Our goal is to ultimately empower our patients to maintain the healthiest way of living. With a bit of work, we can achieve optimal health together, no matter the age, ability or disability.