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Self Help Advice and Exercise for Lumbar Disc Injury and Sciatica

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Welcome to!

side plank from FixYourOwnBackThanks for checking in! Many of you were referred here by your primary care doctor, chiropractor, physical therapist, massage therapist or acupuncturist to help learn a bit about your lumbar disc injury and what you can do to help yourself. Perhaps even more importantly, you need to learn what NOT to do, so that you can keep from hurting yourself.

Others of you have stumbled on this site on a web search, or were perhaps sent here by well meaning friends and family. If that's the case, then you need to know this: This site might not be appropriate for the type of back pain you have!!! This site was designed to help people with the most common cause of moderate to severe back pain--flexion intolerant, disc-related back pain. Below are some common names for this type of back pain:

  • Disc herniation
  • Disc bulge
  • Disc prolapse
  • “Slipped” disc
  • Pinched nerve
  • Sciatica

Because this type of back pain can sometimes indicate a very serious condition, there's some important information and warning signs you need to be aware of. These so-called Red Flags are below and you need to pay attention to them! If you have any of these signs, contact your doctor BEFORE you start with the program on FixYourOwnBack!


In some cases, this type of back pain can indicate a more serious condition that requires medical attention.  This site does not substitute for an assessment by a qualified doctor or physical medicine specialist!  

If you are experiencing:

  • severe pain, 
  • pain that doesn't change with body position, 
  • pain that wakes you from sleep, 
  • weakness in the legs, 
  • difficulty with bowel or bladder, 
  • or numbness in the groin or rectal area then you may be having a medical emergency!  See your doctor before beginning any exercises here.  

By continuing further on this site, you acknowledge that Solutions Sports and Spine, Inc. and Dr. Phillip Snell will not be held liable for injury sustained with the exercises herein, nor for your failure to seek medical care.


If your back pain typically gets worse when you bend forward or twist then you likely have flexion intolerant back pain. Often, one of the pain generating structures in this type of back pain is the lumbar disc, typically one of the lower two, either L5–S1 or L4–5.  While this type of back pain may develop into quite a serious condition over time if untreated, the good news is it is one of the easier types of back pain to treat. Often, some basic education, and specific exercise training will help most people to dramatically decrease the frequency and severity of disc-related back pain episodes that they have. So how do you know if you have this type of back pain?  Browse the questions below and see if most of these issues apply to you. 

  1.  My back pain is worse in the morning when I wake up.
  2.  My back pain gets worse when I bend forward to put on my shoes.
  3.  My back pain gets worse when I get in and out of my car.
  4.  I have had pain in the back of my leg and/or buttock with previous or current episodes of back pain.

 If you answered yes to most of these questions then the information in this site will likely benefit you. To help further identify whether you will benefit from the information in the site, click on the link below and you'll be directed to a video describing a specific type of test you can perform to determine whether information in this site should help your back.

Go To 3 Minute Test



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