The Human Spine, Vertebrae and Disc Anatomy

In Western society we are often taught that the human spine is weak or vulnerable and that we should be very careful not to injure it.

In fact when you look closely at the spine you can see how tough how well designed it is to do its job.The spine is an amazingly strong and clever structure.

I meet many people with back pain who don't really know what their back anatomy actually looks like, I normally show them a model and explain it to them. Very often they feel better when they can see the different parts that make up the spine.

I'm going to try and do the same thing here as its important to understand your back anatomy before thinking about what is causing your lower back pain. By the way , the lower part of your back is also called the lumbar spine.


diagram of human spine
This overview of the spine has a diagram showing how all the major parts of your back connect together.Take a closer look at the diagram of a typical vertebra - the building blocks of your spine.
anatomy of the spinal discs - image of a disc bulge
Pictures of spinal discs including an x-ray showing the space where a disc sites.
small picture of a neurone linkinmg to spinal cord anatomy page
One of the main functions of the spine is to protect the spinal cord. This section has a diagram of the cord and an illustrated review of spinal cord anatomy and its importance in lower back pain.
abdominal and back muscles diagram
All about your abdominal and back muscles including the core stabilising muscles.
small image showing lordosis

Lordosis is a term used to describe the curve in your lower back - it is not a disease or condition. This section explains the medical terms used commonly to describe lower back postures.


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