Rolling Patterns – Roll Your Way Out of Back Pain

For a fitness freak like myself, there’s nothing worse than a bad low back. You can’t workout your lower body, your upper body, sprint, do core work, watch the youtube video on repeat of 50 Cent throwing out the first pitch for the Mets game.


Basically life sucks when my low back is in any level of pain, as anyone who’s been in this situation understands.


In today’s blog I’m going to tell you why rolling patterns are the best for your low back and teach you how to actually do them.


What Are Rolling Patterns?


Rolling patterns are movements on the ground where – you guessed it- you’re rolling around.


Adapted from neuro doctors for paraplegics, these patterns teach your body how to roll over using your upper body OR lower body. What functional rehab experts have found is that these patterns are great for teaching the body to stabilize the core as well as spot compensation patterns that may be contributing to core weakness.


There are 4 types of rolling patterns:

  1. Lower Body – from your back to your stomach (supine to prone)
  2. Lower Body – from your stomach to your back (prone to supine)
  3. Upper Body – from your back to your stomach (supine to prone)
  4. Upper Body – from your stomach to your back (prone to supine)


As you may have already known, the core plays a huge role in low back health. Imagine your spine as the Golden Gate Bridge, and the muscles that surrounded as the wires that hold the bridge in place.


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If any of those wires pulls harder than the other, the bridge will be less stable and thus collapse. The weaker wires will eventually get so weak they will eventually snap.

This is how your core, and more specifically your intrinsic core work.


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If one of these muscles overpowers the other, tissue failure is likely to incur.


With rolling patterns, we are teaching YOUR body to stabilize the with all the intrinsic core muscles with the same amount of tension for each so one isn’t overpowering the other.


In conclusion, when the muscles of the intrinsic core become dysfunctional, the tissues of the low back take over causing tissue failure which can lead to strains, sprains, and possibly disc issues.



How Do I Perform These Rolling Patterns?


1.) Lower Body- from your back to your stomach:


2.)Lower Body – from your stomach to your back:

3.) Upper Body – from your back to your stomach:

4.) Upper Body – from your stomach to your back:

Spotting Compensation Patterns:


Partner feet under feet, spotting diaphragm overpower, spotting overcompensation patterns (asking the patient where they feel like they’re pulling from)


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